Sat. Jun 15th, 2024

Teen charged with terrorism offence as stabbed bishop offers message of forgiveness

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell Jun12,2024
Key Points
  • A teenage boy who allegedly stabbed a bishop has been charged with a terrorism offence.
  • Bishop Mar Mari Emmanuel has delivered his first public message since being stabbed while delivering a sermon.
  • He said he was recovering quickly, and urged his supporters to remain calm and follow the law.
Bishop Mar Mari Emmanuel has released his first public statement while delivering a sermon at Christ the Good Shepherd Church in Sydney.
Meanwhile, a 16-year-old has been charged with committing a terrorist act, as he remains under police guard in hospital.
The offence carries a maximum penalty of imprisonment for life.

The boy has been refused bail and is expected to appear before a bedside court hearing on Friday.

The attack was declared a terrorist act because of the teen’s possible religious motivation.
, the Assyrian bishop said he was doing fine and recovering quickly.
He told supporters to remain calm and refrain from acts of violence .
“I need you to act Christ-like,” he said.
“The Lord Jesus never taught us to fight, the Lord Jesus never taught us to retaliate, the Lord Jesus never said to us ‘an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth’.
“The Lord Jesus said never return evil with evil, but return evil with good.”

The bishop urged followers to “reflect Christ” in their lives, to respect the law and adhere to directives from the police and government.

“The Lord Jesus never said go out and fight in the street, never said to retaliate, but to pray, and this is what I am asking everyone to do,” he said.
In his audio message, the bishop said he forgave his attacker.
“I forgive whoever has done this act, and I say to him: you are my son, I love you, and I will always pray for you,” the bishop said.
“And whoever sent you to do this, I forgive them as well.”
He said he had “nothing but love” in his heart for everybody.
The charge comes as investigators hunt for as many as 50 people involved in a violent riot that unfolded after the incident.
Dozens of police were injured, their cars vandalised and a cohort of officers and paramedics were forced to take shelter inside the place of worship.
NSW Police Commissioner Karen Webb said many people who turned up for the commotion were not members of the church community.

“(What) has been shown is that people just came along to participate in a riot and that’s disgraceful and disgusting,” she said.

The commissioner said 50 people were wanted for questioning over the unrest, including several who disguised themselves, and police were looking for public help to identify them.
“People in the community know who they are, their families know who they are, and we need to know who they are,” she said.
Footage of Monday’s attack at the Christ the Good Shepherd Church showed a person dressed in black approaching and stabbing the bishop multiple times.
The attack was live-streamed via social media, where the bishop has hundreds of thousands of followers.
The bishop was taken to hospital, along with senior priest Isaac Royel, who tried to intervene.

Police have seized the boy’s devices and are investigating whether he could have become radicalised in the lead-up to the attack, which senior officers say appears to have been religiously motivated.

Jamal Rifi, a Lebanese and Muslim community leader, told SBS News the boy’s family were “distraught, shocked, and in disbelief”.
“They are an ordinary family, hard-working, humble … and now they find themselves in this situation,” he said.
“And they’re totally sorry for what their son (has done), and they’ve told me that they met their son at the hospital, and he is also remorseful and he is apologetic.”
Rifi said the family are not staying at their own home out of fear for their safety.
He said the bishop’s message was the “best news” he had received in days, and said it had a similar sentiment to a statement from Sheikh Yahya Safi, Imam of the Lakemba Mosque.
“We all know that the Assyrians are close to us, they come in from Iraq, they are a persecuted community and the last thing we want is to add some trauma to their previous experiences,” he said.

“I have heard the two religious leaders and they are extremely similar of what they’ve said and that will give me further relaxation about our social cohesion.

“I hope that there will be no further retaliation or any other issue that will affect any of these communities because, you know, we all suffered together.”
NSW Premier Chris Minns met religious leaders on Thursday to call for calm and cohesion.
“We’ve come together because we need to, and the message that’s been sent from community leaders is one of compassion, understanding, cohesion, unity and most important peace,” he said.
The premier stressed the importance of faith leaders in imparting instruction and wisdom to the millions of people across NSW who will attend their local churches and mosques to be amongst their community.
“They’ll go there for solace and for strength,” he said.

Additional reporting by the Australian Associated Press.

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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2 thoughts on “Teen charged with terrorism offence as stabbed bishop offers message of forgiveness”
  1. It’s truly inspiring to see Bishop Mar Mari Emmanuel’s message of forgiveness and peace in the face of such a horrific act. His words remind us of the importance of responding to violence with love and compassion. Let’s all strive to follow his example and spread kindness in the world.

  2. A very moving story indeed. It’s heartening to see Bishop Mar Mari Emmanuel’s message of forgiveness and peace in the midst of such a tragic event. It’s a powerful reminder to always strive for goodness and compassion, even in the face of adversity. Let’s all take his words to heart and emulate his Christ-like teachings. Sending prayers for the Bishop’s speedy recovery and for the young boy involved to find guidance and redemption.

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