Christian-Muslim dialogues receiving more attention

 — Dec. 17, 200817 déc. 2008

A few years ago, other than a few specialists in Christian-Muslim dialogue, the average churchgoer would have little awareness of the tentative steps taken in dialogue between Christians and Muslims. The Danish cartoon controversy and Pope Benedict’s comments at a lecture in Regensburg re-focused attention on the difficult relationship between Christianity and Islam. Since then, there has been an intentional effort to bring more publicity to the existing forms of dialogue. There have also been new forums for dialogue established.

In the past months we have seen three such dialogues gather and report their proceedings to the world. In November, the Catholic-Muslim Forum met for the first time. This forum is a response to “A Common Word,” an invitation from 138 Muslim scholars to begin a dialogue with Christians. “A Common Word” was addressed to numerous Christian leaders, and has received positive responses from many quarters. The Catholic-Muslim Forum met November 4-6 in Rome and issued a joint declaration. It is expected to meet again in two years in a Muslim country.

This week we find two further dialogues reporting. On December 14th, a communiqué was issued by a symposium between the World Council of Churches and the Iranian Centre for Inter-religious Dialogue of the Islamic Culture and Relations Organization in Tehran. This symposium is the fifth in a series, and the first to include representatives of the Iranian churches. This Shi’a Muslim organization has close ties to the Iranian government. A similar dialogue also exists with the Vatican. Today, a further dialogue has reported. The Catholic-Muslim Colloquium is a dialogue between the Vatican’s Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity and the World Islamic Call Society (WICS). A short communiqué was issued after their December 15-17 gathering in Rome. This colloquium was the 11th in a series.


Communiqué from the Anglican/Al-Azhar Dialogue Committee (September 13, 2006)
A Common Word between Us and You, letter from 138 Muslim scholars (October 13, 2007)
Pope Benedict XVI’s response to “A Common Word” (November 19, 2007)
Learning to explore love together, a WCC response to “A Common Word” (March 20, 2008)
Joint declaration of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue and the Centre for Inter-religious Dialogue of the Islamic Culture and Relations Organisation (Tehran, Iran) at the conclusion of the sixth Colloquium held in Rome from 28-30 April 2008
U.S. Ecumenical response to “A Common Word between Us and You,” coordinated by the U.S. National Council of Churches (October 8, 2008)
Final Declaration of the Catholic-Muslim Forum (November 7, 2008)
Joint communiqué of the symposium on “Religion and peaceful co-existence” (December 14, 2008)
Final Communiqué on the 11th Catholic-Muslim Colloquium (December 17, 2008)

Posted: Dec. 17, 2008 • Permanent link:
Categories: Communiqué, Dialogue, DocumentsIn this article: Catholic, Christian, Christianity, interfaith, Islam, statements, Vatican, WCC
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Catégorie : Communiqué, Dialogue, DocumentsDans cet article : Catholic, Christian, Christianity, interfaith, Islam, statements, Vatican, WCC

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