Bonn, Germany—UPF hosted an event attended by participants from various religious backgrounds and worldviews as a part of World Interfaith Harmony Week 2019.
A proposal made by King Abdullah II of Jordan resulted in a resolution made by the United Nations General Assembly on October 20, 2010, establishing World Interfaith Harmony Week as the first week of February. Thus, the U.N. General Assembly:
“Encourages all States to support, on a voluntary basis, the spread of the message of interfaith harmony and goodwill in the world’s churches, mosques, synagogues, temples and other places of worship during that week, based on love of God and love of one’s neighbor or on love of the good and love of one’s neighbor, each according to their own religious traditions or convictions.”
World Interfaith Harmony Week is hardly observed in Germany and barely recognized by the general public. However, UPF, wishing to encourage communication and explore possibilities for cooperation, organized a commemorative program in Bonn on February 3, 2019.
The program included an introduction to the contributions made toward peace by UPF and the Interreligious Peace Network, Bonn; a video presentation about the ideas behind the Global Ethic Project (Professor Hans Küng); the presentation of “One Book for Peace”; projects in Bosnia and Herzegovina; and an overview of the territorial development of world religions over five millennia with information about their holy cities. These topics stimulated great interest in the audience, as evidenced by the resulting questions and comments.
Then followed the reading by the participants of prayers and texts from different religions.
Of special interest were two videos from Youth and Students for Peace (YSP) Germany, an organization that is affiliated with UPF, which is a “global network of young people who aspire for peace beyond national, cultural and religious barriers”.
The donations collected at the UPF event will go toward supporting the next YSP Interfaith Workshop, scheduled for April 12 to 16.