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PESHAWAR: Likewise other parts of the country, Christian community in Peshawar and elsewhere in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Saturday celebrated Christmas with religious fervor and zeal. Amid tight security arrangements, special services were held in all major Churches in provincial capital Peshawar where members of Christian community, including man, female, aged and children gathered in a large number.

The Christian community across KP, just like other parts of the country, celebrated the holy festival of Christmas with religious fervor to mark the birth anniversary of Jesus Christ, Hazrat Isa (AS).

In the provincial capital Peshawar, the festivity began late Friday’s night and started prayers at the churches as the corona virus situation has improved in the country, which has gained impetus on Saturday, highlighting wishes of peace for the world in their prayers. Christmas is an auspicious occasion to reflect on the message of Jesus Christ, the eternal message of love, peace, tolerance and compassion for humanity, say Christians during a gathering in Peshawar.

Religious leaders and Christians said, “The day reminds us of the values that Jesus Christ observed in his own life. He not only healed the ailing humanity but preached the divine values of tolerance, love and compassion. Christmas is an auspicious occasion to reflect on the message of Jesus Christ, the eternal message of love, peace, tolerance and compassion for humanity”.

“We, as Muslims, deeply respect Jesus Christ as one of the great messengers of Allah Almighty. The Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah had, right from the first day of the creation of Pakistan, unequivocally declared a policy of equality, freedom and security for all communities living in Pakistan irrespective of their religion, profession or ethnic origin,” they said.

Similarly, the Constitution of Pakistan has guaranteed fundamental rights to all citizens irrespective of their religion, caste and creed, he said, adding that the government was committed to providing equal opportunities to all Pakistanis including minorities. Special cake cutting ceremonies have been planned at different government ministries and private organizations. Security has been increased to avoid any eventuality on the holy festival.

Residential areas with a large number of Christian residents had been decorated with lights, balloons and other decorative items. All major churches, including the All Saints Church, Saint Joseph’s Catholic Church, Cathedral Church and Saint Michael Catholic Church were decorated with colorful lights on the occasion.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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