07/03/2021 India (International Christian Concern) – According to Asia News, July 3, the feast day of Saint Thomas, has been chosen by Indian Christians as the first Indian Christian Day in India. The event, which celebrates the life and ministry of Saint Thomas the Apostle, is designed to stress that Christianity is not a foreign religion in India.
On July 3, Christians of all denominations in India will celebrate the first Indian Christian Day. According to the founders of the event, July 3 was chosen because it is traditionally observed as Saint Thomas Day, the day celebrating Saint Thomas the Apostle who came to India in 52 AD and brought message of Jesus.
It is historically accepted that Saint Thomas was martyred near Chennai, located in India’s Tamil Nadu state, in 72 AD.
“By marking it in 2021, and every year henceforth, we, as followers of Jesus, can preserve our identity within India’s cultural heritage, while uniting with all those who wish to celebrate it, irrespective of language, custom, creed, region, or religion,” the event’s founders claimed.
Father Babu Joseph, a former spokesman for the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India, said the initiative will also help Christianity overcome the false narratives spread by Hindu nationalists.
“This is an important step in making Christianity part of Indian history and ethos,” Father Joseph told Asia News. “In light of attempts by some right-wing organizations to create the impression that Christianity is foreign in India, it is necessary to highlight its antiquity in the country.”