KARACHI: The 75-year, or diamond jubilee, celebrations of the Archdiocese of Karachi began at the St Patrick’s Cathedral here on Sunday under the leadership of the Archbishop of Karachi, Benny Mario Travas.

A special logo has been designed for the occasion that also includes a glimpse of Sindh’s culture in the form of the red Ajrak design filled into the number ‘75’. The celebrations include different programmes for the entire year.

In the past, the Catholic Archdiocese of Karachi used to be a part of the Archdiocese of Bombay, but with the creation of Pakistan in 1947, Karachi was separated from the Archdiocese of Bombay and made a separate entity on May 28, 1948.

Over these years, the Archdiocese of Karachi has played a significant role in the development of the metropolis in the fields of education and healthcare. It founded 62 schools under the umbrella of the Roman Catholic Church.

One of the oldest education institutions in Karachi, the St Patrick’s High School, which was founded in 1861, also comes under the Archdiocese of Karachi now. Among its old boys are two presidents, two prime ministers, two chief ministers of Sindh, two cardinals of the Catholic Church, several mayors of Karachi and several men of the armed forces.

If we look at healthcare under the Archdiocese of Karachi, there is also the Holy Family Hospital, which was established in 1948 and is also one of the oldest hospitals in the city. There is also Darul Sukun, a home for the physically and mentally disabled and the homeless, which was established in 1969. Established in 1956, the Marie Adelaide Leprosy Centre offers free treatment to patients.

The Archdiocese of Karachi has 16 parishes spread all over the sprawling city.

In a message, Pope Francis wrote that he was pleased to learn that the Archdiocese of Karachi is celebrating 75 years of coming into being. “As you mark this milestone, I join all of you in offering gratitude to Almighty God for the many and varied blessings that He has bestowed on the Archdiocese over these past 75 years, which are reminders of the Lord’s abundant goodness and abiding love.”

Published in Dawn, May 29th, 2023

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