Denver, Colo., Feb 21, 2023 / 09:35 am
The three Abrahamic religions — Judaism, Christianity, and Islam — now share a common place to worship in the predominantly Muslim United Arab Emirates with the opening of the Abrahamic Family House in Abu Dhabi.
Such was the dream of Pope Francis and Grand Imam Ahmed Al-Tayeb, who in 2019 signed a historic pledge calling for peace and brotherhood between religions and nations. Four years later a synagogue, church, and mosque sit opposite a secular visitor pavilion in an interfaith complex meant to encourage goodwill and understanding.
Representing the pope for the first prayer service at the new St. Francis of Assisi Church was Cardinal Michael L. Fitzgerald, a past president of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue.
“The place of prayer should also be a place of joy, and I hope that this will be true for all of us here present,” Fitzgerald said at the Sunday prayer service at the new church.
Fitzgerald conveyed the pope’s greetings. He said Pope Francis would encourage all those gathered “to continue in the culture of dialogue as our path; to adopt mutual cooperation as our code of conduct; and to endeavor to make reciprocal understanding the constant method of our undertakings.”