Younan, president of the Lutheran World Federation was born in Jerusalem and is rewarded for having used his position to create a fully fledged network among religious leaders of different faiths in the Middle East.
Tokyo (AsiaNews) - The Lutheran Bishop for Jordan and the Holy Land, Munib A. Younan, is the winner of the 34th Niwano Peace Prize. The prize is awarded for his perseverance and compassion in encouraging dialogue between faith groups in the Holy Land. His commitment emphasizes the communion between faiths, as an integral part in the fight for peace.
Bishop Younan - who was born in 1950 in Jerusalem - has been president of the Lutheran World Federation since 2010. During his long career he has held numerous positions in Lutheran organizations and interreligious – he was also president of the Lutheran Council in Asia - and used his position to create a fully-fledged network among religious leaders of different faiths in the Middle East .
Bishop Younan was one of 14 religious leaders who signed the Declaration of Alexandria in 2002, a document in which rabbis, sheikhs, and bishops assured their commitment to establish peace in the Holy Land, which is holy for all three monotheistic religions.
The reason for the award states that in a world characterized by leaders who seek to highlight differences and contrasts, Bishop Younan has constantly tried to prove the opposite. Bishop Younan embodies the qualities that the Niwano Peace Foundation attributes to religious leaders.
The awards ceremony will take place in Tokyo on 27 July. In addition to the award, Bishop Younan will receive a medal a sum of money.
The selection process of the Award winner is vetted by some 600 people and organizations, representing 125 countries and religions. Nominations are evaluated by an international selection committee of the Niwano Peace Prize, which currently consists of ten religious leaders involved in movements for peace and interreligious cooperation and from various parts of the world.