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Missionary Catholic bishop who toiled in the heart of Islam dies on Easter Sunday

A bishop who died on Easter Sunday after a lifetime of ministry in some of the most difficult places in which to be a Christian, has been praised for his “courageous and dynamic apostolate in the heart of Islam.”

Comboni Missionary Bishop Camillo Ballin, who died on April 12 at age 75 after a long illness, ministered across the Middle East before being appointed the first ever Apostolic Vicar of Northern Arabia, covering Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

Paying tribute to the bishop, Father Andrzej Halemba, Middle East projects coordinator for Aid to the Church in Need (ACN), said: “His was a very courageous and dynamic apostolate in the heart of Islam.”

“Bishop Ballin never denied his Christianity, but at the same time he earned the respect of others by his command of Arabic and his respect for Arabic culture.” Father Halemba said that Bishop Ballin wore his cassock and cross even in parts of the Gulf where symbols of Christian faith are not welcome or banned.

Read more at Aleteia

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