Pope Francis: Role of Women in Interreligious Dialogue

The Vatican’s dicastery for Interfaith and Interreligious Dialogue has been meeting on the topic of the role of women in interfaith and inter-religious activity. (In practice, at the local and grassroots level, women are centre and front of interfaith efforts, including dialogue.) Here, we bring you the address of Pope Francis to this plenary meeting of the dicastery.

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Stay the Course of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change

Religions for PeaceReligious believers are strongly committed to act to address the challenge of climate change. This commitment to act–shared across religions–is based upon a deep understanding of its scientific and–above all–moral and religious dimensions. As a result, many religious communities strongly supported the Paris Agreement that deals with greenhouse gas emissions mitigation, adaptation, and finance, signed in December 2015 by 195 countries.

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BURMA: Interfaith Prisoners of Conscience Pwint Phyu Latt & Zaw Zaw Latt Released

WASHINGTON, DC – The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) expressed satisfaction that the government of Burma has released prisoners of conscience Pwint Phyu Latt and Zaw Zaw Latt. They were released along with more than 250 other prisoners Burma’s government freed as part of a presidential amnesty.

USCIRF Vice Chairman Daniel Mark, who has advocated on behalf of Pwint Phyu Latt and Zaw Zaw Latt, stated that he “welcomed this long-overdue step by Burma’s government. Pwint Phyu Latt and Zaw Zaw Latt, both Muslim, were wrongfully imprisoned for their interfaith activities. Although I welcome and applaud their release, the fact remains that they never should have been imprisoned in the first place. I hope their release signals a more positive trajectory for the freedom of religion or belief in Burma.”

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The “Buddhist pop song” that took sixth at Eurovision


On Saturday, an Italian song about the emptiness of Western consumer culture came sixth at Europe’s wildly popular song competition, Eurovision. Occidentali’s Karma, by Francesco Gabbani, was Italy’s entry to the contest, and while the song (which is flush with Buddhist references) didn’t win, it was a hit with critics. The song was the most watched music video of the contest and was chosen as a favourite by fans and the press.

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