INDAU, Germany (RNS) — The 10th Religions for Peace World Assembly launched Tuesday (Aug. 20) with calls for religious groups to take decisive action on the main geopolitical issues of the day, and ending with an unusual “statement of commitment” aimed at fostering multireligious cooperation.
Almost every religious leader who spoke at the opening ceremony called communities of faith to look beyond their own local or church-related issues.
“Nothing can be accomplished if we work separately,” said Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I of Constantinople.
Kosho Niwano, president-designate of the Japanese Buddhist movement Rissho Kosei-kai, praised interfaith cooperation of the past and said it should continue in the future.
“We have seen half a century of progress so far and for that to continue the only way is for us to work together.”
Cardinal John Onaiyekan, archbishop of Abuja, Nigeria, agreed.
“The future depends entirely on how we address our shared welfare,” he told the more 1,000 attendees at the gathering.