While the Pakistani government fights Taliban and Al-Qaida militants and the U.S. military in Afghanistan makes cross-border strikes, the Church of Pakistan’s social service centers in the Peshawar area have not been attacked.
Bishop Munawar K. Rumalshah of the Peshawar Diocese calls it “a privilege that we as a church are present in perhaps the world’s most hostile and vulnerable areas at the moment.” He told Ecumenical News International in December that “God has allowed us to be there, in his name, to serve humanity, especially people who despise and hate us, by cleaning their wounds and nurturing the children.”
Rumalshah said the centers aren’t exclusively for Christians. Some 95 percent of those who benefit from the church’s education, development work and health care are Muslims.
Ninety-five percent of Pakistan’s 173 million people are Muslim, and the remainder are Christian and Hindu. The Church of Pakistan is the result of a 1970 merger of four denominations: Anglican, Methodist, Lutheran and Presbyterian (Church of Scotland).
© 2014 Augsburg Fortress, Publishers