Saturday, 24 September 2016 10:29
International Meeting: "Thirst for Peace" by the community of Saint Egidio in Assisi.
18 to 20 September 2016.
On the occasion of the completion of 30 years (1986-2016) from the first event of the day of prayer by Pope John Paul II in Assisi an international meeting of cultures and religions on the topic "Thirst for Peace" was held again at the same city. The meeting was from 18 to 22 September 2016. It started on Sunday afternoon at the great theater of the city of Assisi with the presence of the President of Italy Mr. S. Mattarella. The main speakers were the Community's founder Mr. A. Riccardi and the Ecumenical Patriarch Mr. Bartholomew. During Monday and Tuesday, 29 roundtable discussions took place in various places of the city of Assisi with religious leaders from around the world, Orthodox, Catholics, Protestants, Anglicans, Jews, Muslims, Buddhists,, Hindus, Zoroastrians and others, as main speakers. Among the topics discussed were: "Economy and inequality", "Migrants and integration", "Terrorism denies God", "Religions and the Poor", "Migrants and Social Inclusion", "Media and War: Information and Misinformation "," Asia: Religions and the Value of Life, "Christians and Muslims to the test of co-existence ". In honor of the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew on the occasion of 25 years of his Patriarchy, it was organized a discussion entitled "Patriarch Bartholomew: 25 years in the service of Christians and the world". On Monday His All Holiness was also awarded with the Honoris Causa Degree in International Relations by the University of Perugia.
The representative of the Church of Cyprus His Grace Bishop Porfyrios of Neapolis participated at the round table "1986-2016, Yesterday as Today: the Relevance of the Spirit of Assisi”. In his Speech he stressed the value of dialogue to achieve peace. This is the message of the heart and the spirit of Assisi. The ongoing dialogue that the five religious leaders of Cyprus (2009-2016) is an example of hope for the devastated Middle East and the broader region. During Tuesday afternoon a prayer was held for the prevalence of peace in the world. The representatives of each religion prayed in a separate place and then they all gathered for the closing ceremony of the meeting. In this, the Ecumenical Patriarch Mr. Bartholomew, Pope Francis, Archbishop of Canterbury Mr. J. Welby and all of the participants of the meeting participated. After short speeches by the main religious leaders, the message of the meeting which called for world peace, war violence and terrorism condemning was read. The message, in a symbolic gesture, was handed out to the religious leaders and the representatives by children. The whole event ended with the lighting of candles by the religious leaders and the representatives of regions that suffer from war.