Cardinal Ranjith, Bishops & Catholic Clergy condemns Harin’s statement

September 21, 2020

Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith, Bishops and the Catholic Clergy has denied the statement made by MP Harin Fernando at the Presidential Commission inquiring into the Easter Sunday attacks.

“We wish therefore to condemn this puerile attempt of Mr. Fernando to find excuses for his own grave misdeed and cast unjustified and unfounded aspersions of Cardinal Ranjith,” a statement issued by the three Auxiliary Bishops said.

Three auxiliary Bishops Maxwell Silva, Anton Ranjith and J. D. Anthony Jayakody with regard to the recent statement made by Mr. Fernando before the Presidential Commission recently, issued the following statement.

“We wish to communicate that Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith, the Archbishop of Colombo, the administration and the entire catholic clergy of the Archdiocesan, is shocked by the news item which was carried in the print and electronic media recently, with regard to the statement made by MP Harin Fernando at the Presidential Commission inquiring into the Easter Sunday attacks.

Giving evidence, Mr. Fernando apparently has attempted to insinuate that the Cardinal was also aware of the impending attacks and did not celebrate a public Mass in the morning of that fateful day, is purely a presumption on the part of Mr. Fernando. As done in the past years, Cardinal has indeed presided over the solemn celebration of the Easter Vigil service at midnight on Saturday, the 20th April 2019 which followed with the Easter Sunday festive mass at St. Lucia’s Cathedral, Colombo 13 ending in the early hours on Sunday Morning. Subsequently, he has celebrated another Holy Mass at the Archbishop’s House in the morning of the 21st.

It is after the second mass, that he received information on the bomb attack at St Anthony’s Shrine, and he rushed to Kotahena to ascertain the situation and try to console those who had been affected. Mr. Fernando, therefore, has tried to defend himself by dragging the Cardinal into a fictitious creation of his mind. Once again we affirm categorically that the Cardinal and the Bishops as well as the Catholic clergy were in no way made aware of this plot by anyone and so the allegation is baseless.

We wish therefore to condemn this puerile attempt of Mr. Fernando to find excuses for his own grave misdeed and cast unjustified and unfounded aspersions of Cardinal Ranjith. We reiterate that we fully trust the Presidential Commission of Inquiry to render justice to the hundreds of innocent people who lost their lives or were maimed for life due to both the hateful actions of the terrorists and the shameful inaction of the political and administrative as well as intelligence officials of that time, who are responsible for this mindless carnage of human beings. Justice must prevail at any cost.” the statement said.(Yohan Perera)

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