Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, President of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, visited England from 12-16 June to affirm and strengthen the good interreligious relations in this country.
The programme of his visit included visits to the Sikh Guru Nanak Nishkam Sevak Jatha Gurdwara in Birmingham, the Jain Derasar at the Oshwal Centre near Potters Bar, and BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in Neasden. The visits offered many opportunities for dialogue on ways in which believers can work together for the common good and for a more peaceful world.
The visit also included a well-attended interreligious prayer event – “Together in Prayer for Peace”. A visible sign of prayer and solidarity, the event took place in Westminster Cathedral Hall, 13 June, with representatives from different religions offering prayers for peace in their own tradition.
At the same time, this event will demonstrate the friendship between the religions that is in itself a building block for peace. As Benedict XVI said in his 2012 Christmas Address to the Curia “In man’s present situation, the dialogue of religions is a necessary condition for peace in the world and it is therefore a duty for Christians as well as other religious communities”.
Ahead of Cardinal Tauran’s visit, Archbishop Kevin McDonald, the Catholic bishop with responsibility for interreligious dialogue in England and Wales, expressed his delight at the visit describing it as a “unique opportunity for interreligious dialogue, both to strengthen existing good relations, and to make these friendships more widely understood”.
The Pontifical Council for Relations with Other Religion’s web presence is at vatican.va/roman_curia
Cardinal Tauran’s biography can be found at vatican.va/news_services
The full text of the Christmas Address to the Curia can be found at vatican.va/holy_father/benedict_xvi