As part of the Vesak Festival program of the High Commission, High Commissioner Prof. Gamini Gunawardane visited the Embassy of the Holy See (Apostolic Nunciature) and met Acting Head of Mission/Acting Ambassador Rev. Fr. Dario Pavisa.
Rev. Fr. Pavisa presented to the High Commissioner the Message for the Feast of Vesak 2023 from the Vatican entitled, “Buddhists and Christians: Healing Wounded Humanity and the Earth through Karuna and Agape.” The Message reiterated the appeal of Pope Francis to serve others with compassion (Lenten Message 2014) drawing comparisons with Buddha’s emphasis on developing meditation on compassion which will abandon cruelty (Maharahulovada Sutta)”
The High Commissioner presented to Rev. Fr. Pavisa the Vesak Message of. President Ranil Wickramesinghe, which stated, “During these troubled times, it is imperative to raise above all differences and join together in unity and service as espoused by the Buddha, to overcome the dangers in pursuing a life of normality. This path should be guided by the four Noble States of loving-kindness (Metta), compassion (Karuna), sympathetic joy (Mudita) and equanimity (Upekkha), as upheld in the Buddhist philosophy.”
Rev. Fr. Pavisa commended the Sri Lanka High Commission’s strong relationships with the Buddhist, Hindu. Muslim and Christian organizations in South Africa which promote harmony between the multi religious Sri Lankan groups living in this region.
The Heads of Missions also discussed the significant role religions and religious values played in making the South African Truth and Reconciliation (TRC) Process work and the important role religious leaders in Sri Lanka could play in supporting
the reconciliation between ethnic and religious populations in Sri Lanka. Rev. Fr. Pavisa would pass the essence of this discussion to the Vatican and the Apostolic Nunciature to Sri Lanka which is the diplomatic mission of the Holy See to Sri Lanka located in Colombo for possible engagement in the ongoing reconciliation efforts in Sri Lanka.
High Commission of Sri Lanka
22 May 2023