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Religion of Friday, 27 July 2012

Source: GNA

Catholic Bishops call on President Mahama

Pope Benedict XVI on Friday delivered a special message of condolence to President John Dramani Mahama, urging Ghanaians to let the occasion of the passing on of President Mills to unite the country.

The Apostolic Nuncio to Ghana, Most Rev. Dominic Leon B. Kalenga, delivered the message, when he led the Catholic Bishops, to call on President Mahama at the Castle, Osu.

The delegation led by Most Reverend Joseph Osei-Bonsu, the President of the Catholic Bishops Conference was at the Castle, to commiserate with the Government on the passing on of the former President and to congratulate President Mahama on his elevation to the office of the President.

Most Rev. Kalenga said the Pope described the death of the former President as a shock and noted that Ghanaians were in a state of mourning.

“Pope Benedict XVI said: “Whenever such a tragedy hits an African country, the world becomes apprehensive,” but noted that Ghana was a peaceful country and would survive the fear that gripped the people.

He expressed the hope that President Mahama would continue to entrench the principle of democracy, peace and stability championed by the former President.

The Pope, according to Most Rev. Kalenga, urged President Mahama to have a good beginning and prayed that Ghana’s democracy would continue to grow.

Most Rev. Osei-Bonsu said the bishops were shocked to hear the news of the demise of former President Mills and prayed for his soul.

He congratulated President Mahama on his elevation and assured him of their support, prayers, advice and guidance.

President Mahama thanked the bishops for coming to express condolence on the death of the former President, adding that the late President was a true Christian and a true believer of God, “my own faith was strengthened by his faith.”

President Mahama said the Ghana Bishops Conference had been instrumental in the country by constantly coming out to give its position on important national issues even when everybody was mute over such issues.

He expressed the belief that the Bishops would continue to offer the suggestions and raise the red flags when the Government was going off its course, adding that he would continue to count on their support and good counsel, to achieve the country's development goals.

He said a committee had been set up to plan a state burial for the late President and as soon as that was completed Government would announce the program.**