Heartfelt reaction to the poignant realities of a 30-year war

Book Launch: Duleep de Chickera’s 'Water is for all'


By Nathasha Samarasinghe

Bishop Duleep de Chickera’s book, titled 'Water is for all', was launched on June 8 at the Church of Ceylon Diocese of Colombo. The book is a heartfelt reaction to the poignant realities of the 30 year war against LTTE terrorism in Sri Lanka. Rev. de Chickera draws from many extensive years of experience, disappointment and regret that war brings about in the most sensitive of humans, and the few years of relative peace, after the eradication of LTTE terrorism.

The book launch was hosted by Vicar of St. Paul’s Church, Colombo 8, Fr. Dushy Rodrigo, and featured speeches by the Director of Ecumenical Institute for Study and Dialogue, Marshal Fernando, Prof. Camena Gunaratne and Dr. Ahilan Kadirgamar. Several extracts from the book were read and appreciated during the ceremony.

Some of the prominent and most heart-rending subjects touched are, the necessity of moral resistance against the violation of common good, the idea of being captives in an illusion of independence, the importance of truthfulness, and people’s vulnerability in times of chaos. Bishop de Chickera’s insight is comprehensive and warm in its presentation and language.

Marshal Fernando, speaking about how the book came to be, said that the book was meant to be a call for people to be sensitive to their environment and react to the immorality therein, with "courage and humility just as Christ did". Prof. Gunaratne cited the work of Dickens, "it was the best of times; it was the worst of times," to sum up the impression that Bishop de Chickera’s book had made on her. Dr. Kadirgamar dubbed the work a "tremendous archive for lay people." The reaction of the audience to the readings from the book was very positive.

Bishop Duleep Kamil de Chickera is the 14th Anglican Bishop of Colombo and was inaugurated in 2001. He was accorded an honour, in 2008, on his preaching of a key sermon at the Lambeth Conference, at Canterbury Cathedral, in the presence of 650 bishops from around the world. His oration received worldwide acclamation. He holds a B.Th from Theological College of Lanka and an M.Sc from Keble College, Oxford.

Pics by Rajith Wimalasiri

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