INTERVIEW: Rabbi David Rosen: Pope Francis Affirmed All Differences Are Subordinate to Our Common Humanity

Pope FrancisPope Francis affirmed all religious differences must be subordinate to our humanity… In an interview with ZENIT, Rabbi David Rosen expressed this, following his participation last week in the Abrahamic Faiths Initiative (AFI), and their meeting with the Holy Father last Thursday.

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Muslim scholar urges Christians to see past the prejudices

Auxiliary Bishop James Massa of Brooklyn, N.Y., and Dr. Tahir KukiqiHow can Christians and Muslims work together better here and abroad? First of all, we should try to cure Islamophobia and Christophobia in our own communities. By the latter, I mean Muslim prejudices against Christians, where the term “Christian” and “Crusader” are almost interchangeable, and “missionaries” are perceived as “spies” with evil intentions.

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China’s attack on the Uighurs and their Muslim faith

Chinese MuslimsIn the remote northwest province of Xinjiang, Chinese officials are enacting a cultural genocide with few parallels in modern history. It’s been described as the largest incarceration of an ethno-religious minority since the Holocaust. A Turkic-speaking Muslim people known as the Uighurs—along with Kazahks and other Turkic groups—are being subjected to mass detentions and their expression of Islamic faith is being crushed. Uighurs have been imprisoned for such deeds as wearing a headscarf or reciting a verse from the Qur’an in public.

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Water Network invites a pilgrimage of water justice in the Pacific region

ecumenical pilgrimage for water ethicsThe pre-launch of the Lenten campaign “Seven Weeks for Water” was held in Suva, Fiji, on 21 January, under the theme “A Pilgrimage of Water Justice in the Pacific Region.” In 2020, the World Council of Churches (WCC) Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace has a regional focus in the Pacific Region.

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Australia: A Prayer for Bushfires

A Bushfire Prayer

Australia is experiencing an horrendous season of bushfire (wildfires), in a season of drought and no rains. Much forest has burned, stock and animal life has been lost, and mobile communications knocked out. A state of emergency – state of disaster has been declared for those regions experiencing the worst of the bushfires. Much evacuation has taken place.

Courtesy of our friends at Temple Beth Israel, in East St Kilda, we have A Bushfire Prayer to share. The prayer – a Universal Prayer, it is not sectarian – prays for those who fear for the safety others, for those who have been damaged, for those with trauma and nightmare memories.

The prayer goes on to include those with concerns for the stock under their care, those who are fatigued and exhausted, and for those who have generosity and have shared. There is prayer for our harsh climate, for excellence in stewardship and for faithfulness. A rare, universal prayer directly addressing our Bushfire necessities.

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Pope Francis delivers Christmas message to the faithful

Pope Francis delivers Christmas message to the faithful

Vatican City: Pope Francis on Tuesday hailed the virtue of selfless Christian charity as he celebrated Christmas Eve Mass in St Peter’s Basilica.

The service is one of the most important ceremonies in the Catholic liturgy, marking the birth of Jesus Christ. Thousands of people flocked to the basilica and St Peter’s Square to follow it.

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Religious leader protection bill sparks debate in Indonesia

Uproar over Ahok

Indonesia’s Islamic-based Prosperous Justice Party (PKS) has succeeded in pushing a bill on the Protection of Religious Leaders and Religious Symbols.

Earlier this month, it was included on a list of 50 priority bills to be discussed next year. Two other Islamic-based parties in the government coalition, the United Development Party and the National Awakening Party, are supporting the bill.

Almuzzammil Yusuf, a PKS politician and member of the People’s Representative Council, Indonesia’s equivalent of a House of Representatives, says the bill is aimed at “preventing and deterring the intimidation, and persecution of ulemas and religious figures.”

“With this law, we hope that there will be no more criminalizing of religious leaders who give speeches in accordance with the teachings of their religion,” he said.

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Pontifical Academy for Life hosts interreligious discussion on palliative care

Vatican flag flies above St PetersVatican City, Dec 12, 2019 / 04:56 pm (CNA).- The Vatican’s Pontifical Academy for Life held an international symposium this week on medical ethics and palliative care, hosted together with the WISH initiative, a part of the Qatar Foundation. The Dec. 11-12 conference included presentations by representatives of Christianity, Islam, and Judaism on the topic of medical ethics, palliative care, and the mental health of the elderly.

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Message from the Faith-Based Organizations To the High-Level Ministerial Segment of COP25

UNFCC COP25 logoIf the world is to address the climate emergency, every person must be involved in a transformation on many levels, notes a message from the World Council of Churches (WCC) at the UN climate talks this week. Speaking on behalf of Faith Based Organisations in Madrid for the United Nations Conference on Climate change, the message led by the World Council of Churches told – inter alia – “We call for systemic, cultural and spiritual transformations that may be translated into changes in the ways we live, produce and consume.”

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