Christians do not rejoice in any death, says Vatican over bin Laden

By staff writers
May 2, 2011

The Vatican has said that a Christian “never rejoices” in the face of someone’s death, even if that person has committed heinous crimes.

The comment came as part of a short response to the worldwide news that Osama bin Laden, taken to be a key al-Qaida leader, has been killed by US forces in Pakistan, according to a statement made by President Barack Obama

The Vatican described bin Laden as a man who sowed division and hatred and who caused “innumerable” deaths, and said his demise should prompt serious reflection about human responsibility before God.

A Christian “never rejoices” in the face of a man’s death, the Vatican spokesman, Father Federico Lombardi, said in a brief statement this morning (2 May 2011).

Peace not hatred should be what we seek in all events, he declared.

An English translation of his statement was released by the Catholic Church, and reads as follows:

"Osama bin Laden, as we all know, bore the most serious responsibility for spreading divisions and hatred among populations, causing the deaths of innumerable people, and manipulating religions for this purpose.

"In the face of a man’s death, a Christian never rejoices, but reflects on the serious responsibilities of each person before God and before men, and hopes and works so that every event may be the occasion for the further growth of peace and not of hatred."

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