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  • mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato

    » 06/21/2012, 00.00


    Bibles for Muslim leaders to build bridges of peace in Pakistan

    Joseph Laldin

    The director of a Christian organisation organises seminar that brought together some 40 leading Christians, Muslims and Hindus. Grateful for the opportunity to take part in the event, one Muslim scholar acknowledges that Pakistani Christians "love the country" and play an important role in "education and health care." Another Muslim leader says he found inspiration in the teachings and practices of Jesus.

    Multan (AsiaNews) - More than 40 people, including several prominent Muslims, took part in a seminar on the 'Concept of God in Christianity'. The purpose of the gathering was to improve understanding of Christian traditions and promote tangible ways to build "bridges of peace" between Pakistan's Muslim and Christian communities. Participant received a copy of the Bible as a gift. Held in Multan (Punjab) on 12-15 June, the three-day initiative came from Asher William, director of a Christian organisation, Pakistan Outreach, that promotes interreligious dialogue, social harmony and the word of God.

    "It was a wonderful, historical and a landmark day in my life," Williams told AsiaNews. It is "difficult to explain my feelings in words, the joyfulness of the moment when I gave 15 copies of the Holy Bible to Muslim clerics and individuals. I praise the Lord for this extraordinary blessing. I will never forget this day."

    Titled 'Promoting Social Harmony and Peace,' the seminar brought together Christians, Muslims and Hindus. For Williams, the goal was that of building bridges between communities and contributing to the birth of a society "based on equality and non-violence, free from discriminations."

    Two prominent Muslims, Al-Haaj Tahir Abas Naqvi and Ejaz Mehmood, took part in the event. Both received a copy of the Bible (pictured).

    "Holding the Holy Bible in my hands was an amazing experience and a memorable day in my life," said Naqvi, a Muslim cleric and Islamic scholar honoured with the title of al-Haaj bestowed upon those who have made the pilgrimage (the Haaj) to Makkah, a city he has already visited twice. "I will definitely read it and ask for blessings for my family".

    Naqvi acknowledged that in the past he held inaccurate ideas about Christians in Pakistan. "I thought they were against Islam and Pakistan," he told AsiaNews. However, "I met friendly, loving and committed citizens," especially in the fields of education and health care.

    Similarly, Ejaz Mehmood, an Islamic religious scholar, urged Pakistan's "two main communities," Muslims and Christians, to "live in peace."

    He blames the government for introducing rules and laws that he defines as discriminatory against religious minorities, and the cause of many problems that exist today in Pakistani society.

    For Mehmood, learning about the "Concept of God in Christianity," which was the topic of the seminar, "was a significant experience because of the parallels between the Bible and the Qur'an."

    The meeting was also useful because it changed his perceptions about Christians and gave him an opportunity to find inspiration in "the teachings and practices of Jesus."

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    See also

    21/11/2012 PAKISTAN
    Faisalabad: Christians and Muslims make an appeal against terrorism and violence
    The joint effort for peace is made in the Muslim holy month of Muharram. Activists try to stress "commonalities" and "work towards the same direction". Muslim leader calls for "concrete actions," not simply words. Ali Jinnah is cited in favour of a multicultural Pakistan.

    18/09/2006 PAKISTAN
    Pope only wants inter-faith harmony, Pakistani bishops say
    Mgr Saldanha, chairman of the Bishops' Conference of Pakistan, calls Benedict XVI's clarification "a positive and courageous step" and hopes that the unfortunate incident would not negatively affect relations between Muslims and Christians.

    23/09/2014 PAKISTAN

    Faisalabad: If we want peace, let us follow the teachings of Christ, says Muslim leader
    On World Peace Day, a seminar on inter-religious unity and harmony among different faiths saw about a hundred Christian and Muslim leader meet. Muslim leaders says we should follow the "teachings of Jesus" and "turn the other cheek". Governments have an important role to play in protecting minorities and fighting violence.

    04/08/2010 INDIA
    In Khristnagar, Christians, Muslims and Hindus learn about each other reading the Bible
    The initiative by the Diocese of Khristnagar occurs on a weekly basis and is attended by 25 people. Open to all, the workshop explains the Christian worship, provides shared moments and helps analyse everyday life situations through Biblical readings with the help of priests, nuns and lay people.

    01/04/2008 ISLAM – CHRISTIANITY
    Christian and Muslims or how to live together with different dogmas
    Is the Jesus of the Qur‘an that of the Gospels? Should Christians consider Muhammad a prophet? Some Saudi experts seem to think so and want to build dialogue on blackmail (a church in Saudi Arabia in exchange of a profession of faith about the prophet Muhammad). Christianity and Islam are however different and sometimes opposed to one another. Instead of syncretism or blackmail, the only path is that of mutual respect.

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    A scholar at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, who collaborates with AsiaNews, responds to accusations against the agency and people in Hong Kong with respect to criticism of the Vatican’s diplomatic approach towards China. Religious freedom is a fundamental human right and a universal value, whether in China, Russia or the Middle East. Between "Right" and "Left", China defines itself as left, yet it practices state capitalism and unfettered capitalism just as "right-wing governments" do. Gaudium et Spes calls on the faithful to engage in politics against the "arbitrary domination by [. . .] a political party,” like in China.

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