Lisbon, Portugal—The International Congress of Contemporary Christianity was held here from May 24 to 27, 2018, focusing on the theme "Christianity, Culture and Dialogue in a Changing World."
UPF-Portugal was invited to participate through our friend and guest, Prof. Alexandre Honrado, an academic in the area of Religious Studies, who has attended two recent events, the International Leadership Conference 2018 in Korea and the April International Leadership Conference-Europe in Vienna that established the Interreligious Association for Peace and Development (IAPD) in Europe.
Some 60 speakers from varied Christian denominations participated, as well as academics, in the facilities of the Lusófona University of Humanities and Technologies, with simultaneous presentations divided between an auditorium and two rooms. Due to the distribution of the presentations an exact count is not available, but Prof. Alexandre estimates that around 1,000 people went to the various presentations.
I participated by giving a presentation on the last day of the Congress under the theme "Ecumenism in Portugal: A Selective Dialogue," based on one of my academic works in sociology, on the topics of religion, ecumenism, churches and sects and interreligious dialogue.
In addition, in my 15-minute presentation, I took the first few minutes to show some pictures of the two most recent and important events from UPF: the launch of the International Association of Parliamentarians (IAPP) in Portugal and the IAPD in Vienna.
In my opinion, this was a very interesting event in which UPF was able to establish some contacts and together with Prof. Alexandre will reach out to others, especially the main academic and Christian religious personalities (the most ecumenical) in Portugal and thus build a foundation for a later national launch of the IAPD in Portugal.