CBF-SEA BA Link 2008 no. 19

CBF-SEA BA Link 2008 no. 19



My dear friends in the Word,


Here is a new message from Myanmar:


—– Original Message —–

From: Archbishop Charles Bo

To: ambc

Sent: Friday, June 13, 2008 5:39 AM

Subject: Re: Another message from Myanmar



Compassion is the common religion in the Post Nargis Myanmar

As the waters raged in the   pre-dominantly Christian village, the monks from the nearby monastery were on the noble mission of saving people. A monk swam across the currents to pull out a woman who was about to be dragged by the marauding river. In the far off Phyapon, where the Christian group Karuna was distributing aid to the survivors they choose Buddhist monks as their partners in distributing aid to non Christian villages.


All religious groups were made victims by the cyclone. All places of worship-monasteries, clergy houses and convents bore the brunt of the deadly cyclone. Nargis, in its monstrous ferocity tore through many of the famous places of worship of all religions. In Aima, in the Pathein Diocese, Fr Andrew Soe win, offered his life as a supreme sacrifice in trying to reach his marooned people. His body was found after 18 days.

But nothing deterred them from the sacred duty of saving lives. In the predominately Buddhist Country, where Metta and Karuna (mercy and compassion) are the major tenets of a great religion, compassion broke forth like a healing stream after the demonic deluge. Churches and Monasteries became the refugee camps. With death and mayhem threatening them in their villages, thousands took refugee in sacred spaces, seeking coping and mutual consolation. Even before the government could move in, or the do-gooders and NGOs could move in, spontaneous charity sprang forth with Buddhists feeding Christians and Christians feeding the Buddhists etc. Nargis broke many things in an evil way. Goodness broke all parochial borders that fateful night when death danced arrogantly across wounding a nation.

In Bogalay the Hindu temple opened its portals to feed the multitude. In the ravished streets of Yangon, Muslim merchants were distributing food to the starving masses. More poignant was the response of many poor and lower middle class people. They collected whatever they had and every weekend they treaded across in aid convoy to far off Labutta. Nargis stripped naked a nation with violence but people of all faiths are clothing it now with compassion.

With other Christian Communities, Catholics threw in everything into rescue – money, material and man power. Many young men and women volunteered to go to the risky villages, strewn with dead bodies of people and animals. The first psycho social assistance came from nuns who risked their lives, by undertaking dangerous boat travels, without life jacket etc. They were the first ones to hold mothers who lost their children, carried orphans and consoled a grieving community with prayer and simple presence. Hundreds of seminarians were the first rescuers, clearing the villages of debris. All these are done under extreme restrictions. Through the national Caritas, assistance continues.

Compassion is the common religion in the post disaster phase. In Myanmar people lived with various tags – religion, colour and tribe. But now Nargis taught us all, that human tears have no colour, no religion, and no tribe.


Charles Bo





Your donation can be sent to:

Name of the Bank:    ICBC (Asia)

Address of the Bank:    33/F, ICBC TOWER

3 Garden Road, Central Hongkong

Account no:    701-056-00059-0

Account Name: The Procureur General in HK of the Society of the Mission Etrangeres

Swift Code:   UBHKHKHH


Please inform Fr. Emile Louis Tisserand by email that it is for “Yangon – Archdiocese”.

Email: procupic@netvigator.com

Tel;  (852)2849 8187 and 2849 8188

Fax: (852)2849 8319

With our deep thanks,

Charles Bo




The Archbishop thanks us for our prayers and donations:


Dear Emma,


Thanks so much for your compassion for our people of Myanmar.

with my deep appreciation,


Charles Bo



Let us assure the Archbishop that Myanmar will not be forgotten once again!   


Yours in the Lord,

Sr. Emma G.