Sunday, February 09, 2014

Dialogue and peace- Patriarch Bartholomew

Dialogue and peace
Patriarch Bartholomew

This is the speech by Patriarch Bartholomew at the 17th Eurasian
Economic Summit in Istanbul.

It is once again an honor to address the Eurasian Economic Summit, which
is organized each year by the esteemed Marmara Group and is today
considering the topic of "Culture and Ecological Dialogue."

Centuries ago, a Christian mystic declared: "Acquire inward peace, and
thousands around you will find their peace." In some ways, then, the
dialogue for peace begins within. This in turn embraces a religious
dimension, which can never be separated from genuine peace, whether
locally or globally. As faith communities and religious leaders, we are
obliged constantly to remind people about the obligation and
responsibility to choose peace through dialogue.

Human conflict may well be inevitable in our world; but war and violence
are certainly not. If our age will be remembered at all, it may be
remembered for those who dedicated themselves to the cause of peace. We
must believe in and "pursue what makes for peace." (Rom. 14.19)

The pursuit, however, of dialogue and peace calls for a radical reversal
of what has become the normative way of survival in our world. It
demands a transformation of values that are deeply seeded in our hearts
and societies, hitherto determining our relationship with those who
challenge our worldview or threaten our lifestyle. Transformation in the
spiritual sense is our only hope of breaking the cycle of violence and
injustice. For, war and peace are systems, which are contradictory ways
of resolving problems and conflicts. Ultimately, they are choices.

This means that making peace is a matter of individual and institutional
choice, as well as of individual and institutional change. It begins
within and spreads outside to the local and in turn to the global. Thus,
peace requires a sense of inner conversion (metanoia) -- a change in
policies and practices. Peacemaking ultimately requires commitment,
courage and sacrifice. It demands of us a willingness to become people
and communities of transformation.

The various gatherings initiated or organized at the Ecumenical
Patriarchate over the last decades have proved crucial in order to
prepare the way for a more peaceful coexistence and closer cooperation
between the world's peoples. They serve to bring cultures together in a
searching encounter and assist religious believers to establish a more
meaningful form of communication with one another.

Such an interfaith dialogue draws people of diverse religious beliefs
and differing cultural backgrounds out of their isolation, preparing
them for a process of mutual respect, understanding and acceptance. It
is our unswerving conviction that when we truly desire this kind of
encounter and communication and our hearts sincerely seek these, then we
will somehow find ways to coexist in spite of differences in our faiths
and in our cultures.

Isolation, agression

In fact, historical conflicts between Christians and Muslims normally
have their roots in politics and not in religion itself. Speaking of an
inevitable and inexorable "clash of civilizations" is neither correct
nor valid, especially when such a theory posits religion as the
principal battleground on which such conflict is doomed to occur. It may
sometimes be the case that national leaders try to bring about isolation
and aggression between Christians and Muslims; or that politicians or
demagogues mobilize religions in order to reinforce fanaticism and
hostility among nations. However, this is not to be confused with the
true nature and purpose of religion.

Christians and Muslims have lived together, sharing the same
geographical region, in the context of the Byzantine and the Ottoman
Empires, usually with the consent or support of the political and
religious authorities of these two monotheistic religions. In Andalusia,
Spain, believers in Judaism, Christianity and Islam coexisted peacefully
for centuries. These historical models reveal possibilities in our own
world, which is shaped by pluralism and globalization.

It is overly simplistic to distinguish sharply between the cultures or
civilizations of "East" and "West," as if the two are unrelated or can
never converge in any meaningful or creative way. Moreover, it may be
helpful to recall a fact that is rarely acknowledged by historical
commentators and political scientists. As the Byzantine historian
Alexander Vasiliev (1867-1953) observes:

Perhaps the cultural influence of both the Byzantine Empire and Islam
may be noted in the origin and progress of the so-called Italian
Renaissance. Classical knowledge, which was carefully preserved by
Byzantium, and various branches of knowledge which were not only
preserved but also perfected by Arabs [and Ottomans] played an essential
role in the creation of the new cultural atmosphere . . . a connecting
link between ancient culture and our modern civilization. Here we have
an example of the cultural co-operation of the two most powerful and
fruitful forces of the Middle Ages – Byzantium and Islam.

Perhaps, then, it would be more appropriate to focus our imagination not
on some inevitable clash of civilizations, but on the mutual enrichment
that can occur between different, diverse and distinct cultures. This is
a hope expressed in a paradoxical way by a contemporary Turkish writer,
Turan Oflazoğlu (b. 1932): "What we need is to enrich ourselves with
those aspects of foreign culture, which are not congenial to our nature."

This is precisely why a dialogue, which acknowledges differences but
also suggests ways to negotiate differences, may prove helpful to map
out appropriate avenues of communication between cultures and nations.
It is the only way of discovering the peace that is within in order to
realize a peace that is local, which in turn materializes a peace that
proves truly global.


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  • Wednesday, January 08, 2014

    Interfaith Awareness Week 16 - 2013 - Part 1

    Interfaith Awareness Week 16
    12th Annual Capitol Celebration
    December 13, 2013
    Part 1

    Opening prayer; Dan Halling speaks, Calley Jenkins reads proclamation, Creative Arts sings
    photos and collage by JBP c 2013

    (listen here or podcast below)

    Rev. Fr. John-Brian Paprock, Inroads Ministry
    ~4 minutes

    Opening Prayer with HU song
    Led by Cleric Jan Hanson, Madison Eckankar
    ~7 minutes

    Proclamation of 16th Annual Interfaith Awareness Week in Wisconsin
    Calley Jenkins, senior Sauk Prairie High School
    ~3 minutes

    "On the Benefits of Interfaith Studies"
    Dan Halling, teacher at Sauk Prairie High School - World Religions Class
    ~6 minutes

    Podcast - RSS Feed:
    Listen Part 1 here:

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  • Interfaith Awareness Week 16 - 2013 - Part 2

    (listen here or podcast below)
    Part 2

    "Wherever You Are, God is"
    Creative Arts (singing group from Madison Eckankar) ~3.5 minutes

    dan deforest plays native american flute
    lisa kelly offers baha'i prayer
    Interfaith Awareness Week proclamations on display
    photos and collages by JBP c 2013
     Baha'i Prayer
    Lisa Kelly - Madison Baha'i ~2.5 minutes

    "Call of the Wolf/Soul, Cry of Wolf/Spirit"
    Dan Deforest, Native American Flute ~5 minutes

    selena fox gives celebration theme address
    photos and collages by JBP c 2013
    "Celebrating the Gratitude - Our Connection to the Divine"
    Reverend Selena Fox, Circle Sanctuary ~18 minutes

    don carl quixote landness and luann bailey talk creativity
    photos and collages by JBP c 2013
    Closing - We are the World
    Carl Landness and Luann Bailey ~5 minutes

    closing sing-a-long
    photos and collages by JBP c 2013
    Sing-a-long ~10 minutes
    End of 12th Annual Capitol Celebration of Interfaith Awareness Week in Wisconsin

    Podcast - RSS Feed:
    Listen Part 2 here:

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  • Tuesday, December 10, 2013

    Activities Interfaith Awareness Week 2013

    Interfaith Awareness Week 2013

    Sunday, December 8 – Saturday, December 14

    Free & Open to the Public

    December 9-13, daily, 9am-5pm

    World Religions in Wisconsin

    exhibit includes displays from a variety of traditions

    Wisconsin State Capitol Rotunda

    Madison, Wisconsin

    Wednesday, December 11, 10am-Noon

    Sharing Perspectives on Interfaith Dialogue

    group discussion & dialogue

    Madison Interfaith Dialogue Group monthly meeting

    Holy Wisdom Monastery Retreat & Guest House

    4200 County Highway M, Middleton, WI 53562

    Friday, December 13, Noon-1pm

    Capitol Interfaith Celebration

    presenters & performers from a variety of traditions

    Wisconsin State Capitol Rotunda

    Madison, Wisconsin

    Saturday, December 14, Noon-4pm

    Happy Holidays Interfaith Open House

    Refreshments & Nature walks, plus:

    Noon: Interfaith Ceremony for Wreaths Across America

    2 pm: Yuletide traditions talk by Rev. Selena Fox

    Circle Sanctuary Nature Preserve & Cemetery

    5354 Meadowvale Road, Barneveld, Wisconsin

    (608) 924-2216;

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  • Wednesday, November 20, 2013

    Interfaith Awareness Week at the Wisconsin Capitol

    The 16th Annual Interfaith Awareness Week - annual Capitol Celebration in the rotunda of the State Capitol
    12 NOON, FRIDAY, DECEMBER 13, 2013

    displays of world religions in the capitol rotunda all week - Monday through Friday
    DECEMBER 9-13, 2013

    for more information - or (608) 443-7241

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  • Wednesday, November 06, 2013

    Interfaith Curriculum for young people (free online)

    From: Interfaith <>

    Interfaith Curriculum for young people (free online)

    Dear Interfaith Colleagues:

    The Interfaith Explorers curriculum is a free UNESCO-supported
    educational resource that helps young people to explore
    cultural/religious diversity, understand & respect differences and
    embrace similarities.

    With a particular focus on Islam, Christianity and Judaism, this very
    comprehensive curriculum features video, audio and print resources.

    Please feel free to forward this announcement and link through your
    communities and networks for use in newsletters, bulletin boards,
    websites, mailing lists, list-serves, blogs, Facebook pages, twitter,

    To access this resource free of charge, click here:

    Paul McKenna
    Scarboro Missions Interfaith Dept.
    2685 Kingston Rd.
    Toronto, Ontario
    Canada M1M 1M4
    tel. 416-261-7135 ext. 296

    "Is it true that the one I love is everywhere?"
    Rumi, Persian mystic & poet

    Members mailing list

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  • Human Rights Day Toolkit

    Human Rights Day Toolkit

    Human Rights Day is December 10th. We invite you and your congregation
    to join with NRCAT in marking Human Rights Day during worship services
    and through advocacy activities either the weekend of December 6-8,
    December 13-15, or another time of your choosing. Sign-up
    ( ) now to receive our Human
    Rights Day Toolkit, delivered to your inbox on October 25, to help
    your congregation mark Human Rights Day.

    This year, NRCAT's Human Rights Day focus is on Solitary Confinement
    in an Age of Mass Incarceration. We invite your congregation to focus
    on the human rights crisis faced by over 80,000 people being held in
    long-term solitary confinement in the U.S. Prisoners in solitary
    confinement are locked in a cement cell alone 23-24 hours a day, seven
    days a week, sometimes for months, years, even decades. The United
    Nations Special Rapporteur Against Torture, Juan Mendez, has stated
    that to keep an adult in solitary confinement for more than 15 days
    constitutes torture, and has called for a prohibition on the use of
    solitary confinement for youth and those with mental illness.

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  • Tuesday, September 17, 2013

    TRANSCENDENCE - The 2014 Multifaith Wall Calendar is Available


    ~ locally ~ in the Greater Madison Area!

    The Multifaith Wall Calendar is an excellent source of accurate dates and descriptions of over 350 observances, including events from 14 world religions, and is an essential source of information for government, educational institutions, business people, travelers, and all who want to become enlightened global citizens.
         * Holidays and festivals accurately dated and described 

    * Large, color-coded easy-to-read calendar grid
         * Twelve original beautiful color images 

    * A beautiful calendar for the school, home and office 
          * A perfect gift


    Order and reserve your copy today!
    Be glad to them bring to meetings, have pick up or drop off as well.
    For each calendar delivered by USPS, please send a check for $15.50 ($12.50+$3.00 shipping) and mail to:

    Inroads Ministry
    P.O. Box 5207, Madison, WI 53705
    (608) 443-7241 ~

    Your order cannot be processed until payment is received.

    Dear Friends, 
         Multifaith calendars available only as limited supplies last. Paid orders will be shipped within the next week, most within the next business day. Local USPS will deliver promptly. We can also arrange drop offs or pick ups, as possible.
    Peace and light,
    Rev. John-Brian Paprock, Inroads Ministry
    * * * * * * * * * * * * *


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  • ~The View from Inside Syria~

     ~The View from Inside Syria~

    From: Tamimi
    Sent: 09/06/13 01:30 PM
    ~The View from Inside Syria~



    "In my city of Homs it was a very beautiful peaceful city. We were Christians, Muslims from many religions living together. My best friend was Suni. And other one Allawi. Not a time we thought about religion except when marriage. And now my peaceful city is almost dead.

    All the old beautiful ancient Mosque and churchs was destroyed. My city had a great history, her name was Ammessa. And the Roman emperor Karakala was born from a Homsi lady. Her name was Julia Doumna. Same story goes on other cites like Allepo. It is an old Roman city used to be her old name was Beroia.

    The history of my beloved Syria goes back to 4000 BC. This heritage belongs to all Universe not only to us!!....

    Excuse my language and my stress.

    My word is crying and screaming. But what to do alone? I am only one Syrian lady from 23 million Syrians. If I keep fighting with love for peace to spread peace again can I ?

    No one is perfect..

    I think we should take the opinion of those who's still there, inside Syria waiting for outside strike. My husband, my two brothers, my mom and dad, my cousins- all my family and my best friends are still there.

    I think outside leaders says you should use the military attack, but go there or imagine that one of your family member are still there!

    They are waiting for the international investigators to go out of Syria to start the strike !!!!!! Are the investigators humans and my people not? I was living there for 37 years and I just came to foreign lands.

    We were living all of us together- Christians, Muslims (Allawi, Suni, Dourzi) all of us together as a big family like Damascus mosaic.

    Many very good honest people. If your personal family are there will you do the attack and risk their life?? Why do they want to kill the Syrian people twice??!!!!!!

    Please help to bring peace to Syrian people, not more war. This is a word of one person but a feelings from thousands and thousands. You want to fight? Who will fight with us for a gunless world? To do this we need huge amount of humanity in the gun factory's heart."

    ~Lama Abboud
    Citizen of Homs, Syria

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  • Announcing URI's new Executive Director, Victor Kazanjian

    From: Kiran Bali, Chair of URI's Global Council
    Share This:
    San Francisco, CA – September 3, 2013 – The United Religious Initiative (URI) announces Victor Kazanjian as its new Executive Director. Kazanjian will assume the leadership role on October 15, following Rev. Charles Gibbs who retired as URI's Executive Director in June of this year.
    "The United Religions Initiative community in 86 countries of the world enthusiastically welcomes Victor Kazanjian as our Executive Director and looks forward to his leadership and friendship," said The Right Rev. William E. Swing, President and founder of the United Religious Initiative.
    Kazanjian is looking forward to join URI in building peaceful communities and engage problems of injustice and violence by supporting interfaith cooperation and understanding. "At a time when religion is often seen to be at the root of division among people, it is a privilege and honor to be given this opportunity to lead an organization such as URI that stands out as a beacon of hope for the possibilities of peace" said Kazanjian.
    Kazanjian is coming from Wellesley College where he served for more than two decades as Dean of Religious and Spiritual Life, Co-Director of the Peace & Justice Studies Program and most recently Dean of Intercultural Education.
    Kazanjian's work at Wellesley College is widely acknowledged as the catalyst in the national movement to include religion and spirituality as core issues in higher education, and has led to inter-faith and inter-cultural growth and understanding. Specializing in inter-religious dialogue and conflict transformation, diversity and democracy, and peace building, Kazanjian is a recognized thought-leader and the co-author and editor of several books and numerous articles, including Education as Transformation: Religious Pluralism, Spirituality and a New Vision for Higher Education in America, (New York: Peter Lang, 2000), Beyond Tolerance: a Campus Religious Diversity Kit, (Washington: NASPA, 2004) and the Studies in Spirituality and Education series published by Peter Lang Press.
    Global Council Chair Kiran Bali extends the council's support. "I am absolutely delighted to welcome Victor Kazanjian as our esteemed Executive Director of URI. Victor is a real asset to URI bringing his extensive experience and high regard in the field of international interfaith cooperation. His leadership has been truly inspirational and has resulted in effective and impactful projects. I look forward to working in conjunction with Victor, our URI community and our partners to further strengthen our initiatives throughout the exciting times that lay ahead."  
    In 1998 Kazanjian co-founded Education as Transformation, an international organization working with colleges and universities around the world to promote religious pluralism and spirituality in education. He is also a visiting faculty member and Fulbright Scholar at the Malaviya Center for Peace Research at Banaras Hindu University in Varanasi, India, creator of Wellesley College's Wintersession program in India, and member of the Global Learning Leadership Council of the American Association of Colleges and Universities (AAC&U).
    Victor Kazanjian is an ordained priest in the Episcopal Church and holds a Master of Divinity degree from the Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He is also a graduate of Harvard University.
    URI is a global grassroots interfaith network that cultivates peace and justice by engaging people to bridge religious and cultural differences and work together for the good of their communities and the world.
    We implement our mission through local and global initiatives that build the capacity of nearly 600 member groups and organizations in 86 countries to engage in community action such as conflict resolution and reconciliation, environmental sustainability, education, women's and youth programs, and advocacy for human rights. 
    Visit for further information on URI's projects in: Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean, Middle East and North Africa, Southeast Asia and the Pacific, and North America.
    Contact: Deborah Lauricella
    (415) 956-1791
    P.O. Box 29242 | San Francisco, CA 94129

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  • Saturday, July 06, 2013

    Secret shrine shared by Muslims and Christians

    Secret shrine shared by Muslims and Christians

    Story from BBC NEWS:

    Published: 2010/04/13 17:03:36 GMT

    By Dusko Arsovski
    BBC Macedonian
    The shrine is approached up a steep hill

    Up 240 steps, behind a padlocked wooden door, is a shrine holy to both
    Christian and Muslim believers.

    It is not well known. Wary of flocks of tourists, the people in
    Makedonski Brod, in south-western Macedonia, have kept its existence a
    well-guarded secret for years.

    The aged building, marked only by a cross from outside, is decorated
    within by Christian icons, and portraits of both Jesus Christ and
    Muslim saints.

    A stone - said to be from the tomb of a saint of the Bektashi order of
    Islam, sits right in the middle of the room.

    The Bektashi Order is a branch of Sufi Islam which originated in
    Turkey and spread to parts of the Ottoman empire, including the

    For its adherents this building is their place of prayer - a "turbe".

    To Christians it is the Church of Saint Nikola. But they have shared
    the space happily for years.

    It is a remarkable feature in a region that has so recently been torn
    along ethnic and religious lines.

    'Miracles happen'

    Baba Ejup Rakipi, the local Bektashi leader, tells how, once a year,
    Christians and Muslims come together here on the day of Saint George
    known as "Gjurgjovden".

    On that day, after prayers, he says, believers sit around the same
    "table of love". They drink from the same glasses and eat with the
    same forks.

    The walls bear images of both Christian and Muslim saints

    "There are souls who neither doubt, nor feel disgust towards other
    souls, because we are God's creatures and cannot be divided," he says.

    The shrine in Makedonski Brod was first built as a church in the 14th
    Century, but was destroyed later during the Ottoman invasion,
    historians in Macedonia's capital, Skopje say.

    But the legend told in the area has it that the church was rebuilt as
    a sacred place in the 18th Century by a Muslim bey, in an effort to
    remove the curse from the house he was trying to build, that was
    always collapsing.

    In the shrine of today, the Orthodox priest, Marko, says he often
    prays for the Muslim worshippers and "sometimes miracles happen".

    He tells the tale of a mute Muslim boy who had started to speak upon
    hearing an Orthodox prayer read for him.

    "Unfortunately, I do not have any scientific evidence to back this," he adds.

    'We're all the same'

    As for sharing the space with believers of another faith, the priest
    has no problem.

    "Our origin is from the same creator, therefore we are all the same in
    front of God no matter what religion we belong to - Muslim, Orthodox
    or Roman Catholic. We are all the same and the God's mercy is equal
    for all," he says.

    Historians in Macedonia's capital, Skopje, say that the shrine at
    Makedonski Brod, although not known to many, it is not the only one in
    the country.

    Ethnologist Elizabeta Koneska has studied the phenomenon for years.
    She says such places of worship are common in small countries like

    "For centuries, people who lived together, also prayed in common
    temples," she says.

    "Although the ritual was observed discretely, people respected it and
    tolerated each-other".

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  • Thursday, May 23, 2013

    FW: MP calls for religion to be taken into account when treating ethnic minorities for mental health problems

    Bolton MP calls for religion to be taken into account when treating ethnic minorities for mental health problems
    8:00am Wednesday 22nd May 2013 in News
    TACKLING mental health problems in ethnic minorities should take religion and spirituality into account, Bolton South East MP Yasmin Qureshi has told the Commons.
    Speaking during a Parliamentary debate, Ms Qureshi claimed mental health issues among black and ethnic minority communities were often not diagnosed properly, saying they could struggle to access “appropriate” treatment which was culturally sensitive.
    Ms Qureshi told the Commons: “Members touched on mental health issues in black and minority ethnic communities.
    “I will mention that as well because, in addition to a number of barriers, such as jobs, stigma and rejection by family and friends, they also face the barrier of accessing appropriate care and treatment that is also culturally sensitive.
    “Although it is accepted that there is nothing genetically that makes people from black and minority ethnic groups more vulnerable to mental health issues, often those issues are not diagnosed properly.”
    She also said psychiatry should take a more rounded view, taking into account religion and spirituality of the people being treated, rather than always taking a “purely medical” approach.
    Ms Qureshi added: “Psychiatry in the United Kingdom, understandably, is based on the Western understanding of mental illness and often medical models are used to treat it, but in fact mental health means different things to different people from different cultures and different communities, and they can be affected by many different issues, such as spiritual, religious and background issues.
    “Those might relate, for example, to the countries they have come from.
    “Therefore, a purely medical approach is not necessarily the right one for many people.
    “A more holistic approach that looks at a person’s overall health should be considered.”
    And her comments have been welcomed by mental health professionals in Bolton.
    Psychologist Tom Turner, owner of private practice The Psychology Team — which operates in Bolton and Horwich — said: “Given one of the main treatments for the most common mental health complaints — such as anxiety and depression — is cognitive behavioural therapy, which is the main talking therapy that the NHS employs, an investigation of the beliefs and attitudes of the clients being treated is a part of that.
    “People working with these communities should have an understanding of their cultures and beliefs.”

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  • Tuesday, March 26, 2013

    Pope urges religions, those with no church to ally for justice

    Pope urges religions, those with no church to ally for justice
    By Philip Pullella | Reuters – Wed, Mar 20, 2013
    VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - Pope Francis urged members of all religions and those belonging to no church on Wednesday to unite to defend justice, peace and the environment and not allow the value of a person to be reduced to "what he produces and what he consumes".
    Francis, elected a week ago as the first non-European pope in 1,300 years, met leaders of non-Catholic Christian religions such as Orthodox, Anglicans, Lutherans and Methodists, and others including Jews, Muslims, Buddhists and Hindus.
    "The Catholic Church is aware of the importance of furthering respect of friendship between men and women of different religious traditions," the Argentine pontiff told the religious leaders in an audience at the Vatican.
    Speaking in Italian in the frescoed Sala Clementina, he said members of all religions and even non-believers had to recognize their joint responsibility "to our world, to all of creation, which we have to love and protect.
    "We must do much for the good of the poorest, the weak, and those who are suffering, to favor justice, promote reconciliation and build peace," he said.
    Francis told the religious leaders to fight "a one-dimensional vision of a human person, according to which man is reduced to what he produces and what he consumes," which he said was "one of the most dangerous snares of our times".
    While he said history had shown that any attempt to eliminate God had produced "much violence," he reached out to those who seek truth, goodness and beauty without belonging to any religion.
    "They are our precious allies in the commitment to defend human dignity, build a more peaceful coexistence among people and protect nature with care," he said.
    Francis' description of people who belong to no religion as "precious allies" in the search for truth was a marked contrast to the attitude of former Pope Benedict, who sometimes left non-Catholics feeling that he saw them as second-class believers.
    Since his election a week ago, Francis has set the tone for a new, humbler papacy, calling on the Church to defend the weak and protect the environment.
    In another sign of his simpler style, Francis addressed the religious leaders while seated in a beige armchair and not the usual elaborate throne used in the ornate hall for audiences.
    "I feel a great deal of excitement and optimism and hope," said Jerusalem-based Rabbi David Rosen, International Director of Inter-religious Affairs for the American Jewish Committee.
    "He is deeply committed to the Catholic-Jewish relationship," Rosen, who attended the meeting, told Reuters.
    Yahya Pallavicini, a leader of Italy's Muslim community, said he was impressed by the pope's insistence of inter-religious friendship.
    "Friendship is a core way to increase brotherhood between believers and also to increase the deepness of the dignity of humanity," he said after the meeting.
    "We can't consider man only as a consumer or as someone who has to be considered only in terms of the market but as a believer and as a person who has the holiness in his heart."
    Before his address, the pope had a private meeting with Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew from Istanbul, who attended Francis's inaugural Mass on Tuesday.
    It was the first time the spiritual head of Orthodox Christians had attended a Roman pope's inaugural Mass since the Great Schism between western and eastern Christianity in 1054.
    At Wednesday's meeting, Francis called Bartholomew "my brother Andrew," a reference to the apostle who was the brother of St Peter and was the first bishop of the Church of Byzantium.
    Francis also held a private session with Metropolitan Hilarion, the foreign minister of the Russian Orthodox Church, the largest in the Orthodox world.
    Also at Wednesday's meeting was Abe Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League in the United States.
    Foxman is a Jew born in Poland in 1940 and saved from the Holocaust by his Polish Catholic nanny, who raised him as a Catholic during the war and then returned him to his family. His parents survived the war but 14 family members were killed.
    "I asked him to bless the memory of the Catholic nanny who saved my life and he said he would," Foxman told Reuters.
    Archbishop of York John Sentamu led a delegation from the Anglican Communion.
    Other guests included World Council of Churches General Secretary Rev Olav Fykse Tveit and Jordan's Prince Ghazi bin Muhammad, head of an Islamic group that launched a dialogue with the Vatican after Pope Benedict angered Muslims in 2006 with a speech that implied their faith was violent and irrational.
    (Additional reporting by Tom Heneghan; Editing by Mark Heinrich)

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  • Tuesday, January 29, 2013

    Video introduction to the Golden Rule


    A Video Introduction to the Golden Rule

    Dear NAIN colleagues:

    In this 12-minute video, Canadian Golden Rule activist - Paul McKenna -
    outlines the basic tenets of the Golden Rule. McKenna demonstrates how the
    Golden Rule can be applied in numerous realms including social justice,
    multiculturalism, diversity and interfaith dialogue. Ideal for classrooms,
    youth groups and adult audiences.

    This video also comments on the visual and symbolic features of the Scarboro
    Missions Golden Rule Poster which has achieved international renown as an
    educational and interfaith resource.

    Below is the link that will enable you to view this video. Please feel free
    to forward this link and announcement through your communities and networks
    for use in newsletters, bulletin boards, websites, mailing lists,
    list-serves, blogs, Facebook pages, twitter, etc.

    To view the video, click here:

    <a href="

    Paul McKenna

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