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Bishops launch website to encourage inter-caste marriages

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Bengaluru: An office of the Indian Catholic bishops has launched a matrimonial website to encourage marriages between different castes.

“Encouraging inter-caste marriages is one of the recommendations of the CBCI Dalit Empowerment Policy,” pointed out Father Z. Devasagaya Raj, national secretary of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India Office for Scheduled Castes and Backward Castes.

The website, he added, will help young people to find life partners who want to rise above the caste mindset. “The non-Dalits who want do not believe in caste system can also find their partners on this website,” he added.

The website was opened during a two-day workshop in Bengaluru to implement the Dalit Empowerment Policy of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India (CBCI).

About 110 people, including secretaries of diocesan and regional commission for Scheduled Caste and Backward Castes (SC/BC) from all over India attended the February 20-21 workshop at Indian Social Institute. Dalit Christian leaders and volunteers for Dalits in Limbo, a social media campaign also participated.

The link is found on the website of the CBCI Office for SC/BC www.dalitchristianscbci.

The workshop welcomed Bishop Sarat Chandra Nayak of Berhampur who was recently elected as the chairperson of the CBCI Office. It also bid farewell to Bishop Neethinathan Anthonisamy of Chingleput, who served as the chairperson for the past eight years.

Also present was Bishop Soundaraj Periyanayagam of Vellore, a member bishop of the office. The other member is Bishop Moses D. Prakasam of Nellore.

Bishop Nayak Bishop hails from Kandhamal in Odisha where nearly a hundred Dalit and Tribal Christians were murdered for their Christian Faith in 2008.

He encouraged the participants to take the CBCI Dalit Empowerment Policy forward by implementing it in all 174 dioceses in the country.

Jesuit scholar Father Maria Arul Raja, one of the resource persons, stressed that working for the empowerment of Dalits is not an option but an obligation.

During the workshop, Maria Hartmann was given the Best Dalit Christian Entrepreneur Award.

The workshop was organized by Fr. Devasagayaraj along with Sr. Robancy, the national program coordinator, and volunteers.

Source: Matters India

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