A Day of Deep Sorrow
It was the holiest of days for the Christian community and the most joyous! Easter Sunday is the culmination of 40 days of prayer, abstinence and fasting, when Christians the world over commemorate the resurrection of Jesus from the dead.
But for Sri Lankan Christians, their joy in celebrating the Risen Lord was torn asunder when suicide bombers detonated themselves at two Roman Catholic churches in the Western Province and at an Evangelical church in the Eastern Province, on Easter Sunday, April 21. The heartless attack which left more than 250 dead and a five hundred injured, also targeted three five star hotels in Colombo. The attacks were carried out by the National Thowheed Jamath and several days later, the Amaq News Agency, the propaganda outlet of ISIS stated that the attackers had been Islamic State fighters.
Muslim and Christians in Sri Lanka have lived in peace with each other for decades, and this attack has left many perplexed and looking for answers. Anger against the State is palpable; most of the public is outraged, that despite the intelligence services being aware of a possible attack, no action had been taken to prevent the carnage.
Instead of working together, politicians of all hues, including the President, Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition have been playing the blame game to bolster their political profiles.
While politicians are busy earning cheap political mileage out of grief, for the injured and family members of the dead, Easter Sunday will henceforth be a day of deep sorrow.