World Evangelical Alliance is satisfied with its Program of Dialogue with Islamic Leaders
The Associate Secretary General of the World Evangelical Alliance (WEA), Thomas Schirrmacher, has drawn a positive conclusion regarding its international program of dialog with leading Muslim clerics around the world.
Shortly after having been inducted as WEA Secretary General, Bishop Efraim Tendero (Manila) gave the Office for Intrafaith and Interfaith Relations (OIIR), headed by Thomas Schirrmacher together with Bishop Cesar Vicente P. Punzalan, III (Manila), the assignment of conducting annual dialogues with ten individuals from the top level of leadership of Islam in a particular country or from global Islamic movements. They are supported in their efforts by the expertise of the WEA’s International Institute of Islamic Studies, which is under the Islamic studies specialist from Bonn, Christine Schirrmacher, as well as the WEA Global Ambassador, Brian Stiller.
The foundation set was the global Christian declaration, ‘Christian Witness in a Multi-Religious World’, which was adopted in 2011 by the Vatican, the World Council of Churches, and the WEA. Dialogue is integrated into the missionary mandate and is reflected in the document’s beginning words: “Mission belongs to the very being of the church.” At the same time, however, dialogue is indispensable: ‘Christian Witness in a Multi-Religious World’ also includes dialogue with people who are adherents of other religions and cultures (Acts 17:22-28). Christians should “build relationships of respect and trust with people of all religions, in particular at institutional levels between churches and other religious communities, engaging in on-going interreligious dialogue as part of their Christian commitment. In certain contexts, where years of tension and conflict have created deep suspicions and breaches of trust between and among communities, interreligious dialogue can provide new opportunities for resolving conflicts, restoring justice, healing of memories, reconciliation and peace-building.”
Since that time, every month at some location on the globe, Thomas Schirrmacher, Christine Schirrmacher, Bishop Cesar Vicente P. Punzalan III, Brian Stiller, Rosalee Velosso Ewell as well as Thomas K. Johnson and others have conducted official dialogues with a grand mufti in a particular country or with leading Islamic theologians or heads of Islamic movements such as the Bektashi and Ahmadiyya movements.
According to Schirrmacher, it is not only the convictions of both sides which are presented and relationships which are developed in the process. Rather, it is often the situation facing persecuted religious minorities and other sensitive issues which are discussed. All in all, Schirrmacher is very satisfied that there is success in linking relationships based upon reconciliation and human rights to a clear witness of faith.
Schirrmacher added that this clearly has to do with the top level. At the same time, Evangelical leaders conducted innumerable meetings with Muslim leaders on local, national, and regional levels.
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- Photos (if not other mentioned © BQ / Warnecke):
- Photo 1: Egypt – Grand Mufti Shawki Ibrahim Allam
- Photo 2: Ahmadiyya – Kalif Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad
- Photo 3: Albania – Grand Mufti Skënder Bruçaj
- Photo 4: Alevita – Chair in Germany Hüseyin Mat (with Volker Beck, MP)
- Photo 5: Algeria – With the President of the Algerian Muslims in Europe
- Photo 6: Azerbaijan – Discussion with Caucasus Muslim Board
- Photo 7: Azerbaijan – Rashad Aliyarli, vice-chair of the Caucasus Muslim Board
- Photo 8: Australia/Maledives – Quran scholar Abdullah Saeed
- Photo 9: Bahrain – Sheikh Maytham Al Salman
- Photo 10: Bangladesh – President of the Parlament
- Photo 11: Bektaschi, Head of Sufi Order – Haxhi Baba Edmond Brahimaj
- Photo 12: Bosnia – Grand Mufti Mustafa Efendi Ceric (bis 2012)
- Photo 13: Gambia – Sharia Judge Sheikh Lewis
- Photo 14: Indonesia – Din Syamsuddin, Chair, Indonesian Ulema Council Center, Jakarta
- Photo 15: Iran – S. Abulhasan Navab, President, University of Religions, Qom, Iran © L’Osservatore Romano
- Photo 16: Iran – Seyed Mohammad Ali Abtahi, President, Institute for Interreligious Dialogue, Teheran, Iran
- Photo 17: Lebanon – Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdul Latif Derian
- Photo 18: Lebanon – High Sharia Judge, Saida
- Photo 19: Montenegro – Grand Mufti of Montenegro (beside the President of Albania)
- Photo 20: Pakistan – Muhammad Abd-ul-Khabìr Azad, Grand Imam of the Central Moisque in Lahore, Pakistan
- Photo 21: Pakistan – Maulana Uzair Albazi (Muhammad Musa Albazi University)
- Photo 22: Pakistan – General Secretary Muhammad Hanif Jalandhari (Wafaq ul Madaris Al-Arabia)
- Photo 23: Pelestine – Grand Mufti Muhammad Ahmad Hussein
- Photo 24: Serbia – Grand Mufti Muhamed Jusufspahic
- Photo 25: Singapore – Mohamed Imram
- Photo 26: Turkey – Grand Mufti of Istanbul Rahmi Yaran CS
- Photo 27: Turkey – Grand Mufti of Istanbul Rahmi Yaran TS
- Photo 28: Turkey – Mufti of Istanbul Mustafa Çagrici (til 2011)
- Photo 29: Tunesia – Abdelfattah Mourou, Ennahda, Vice-President of the Tunisian Parlament
- Photo 30: Usbekistan – Mufti of Usbekistan
- Photo gallery with all photos: https://www.thomasschirrmacher.net/pictures/dialogue-with-islamic-leaders/