The award goes in its fourteenth edition to the Seville City Council. The city promotes a touristic route of Protestant history and has named several streets after Evangelical women.
Spanish news website Protestante Digital awarded Antonio Muñoz Martínez, as mayor of Seville, with the ‘Unamuno Friend of Protestants’ Prize in its 2023 edition.
It recognises his commendable work in normalising the social and cultural coexistence of Evangelical believers in Seville, as well as for the restoration of the Protestant historical memory in the city.
This prize is the main distinction awarded by Spanish Protestantism, which has been given since 2006, this being its fourteenth edition.
The award honours a Spanish person or social institution that, not being of Protestant or evangelical faith, has made an outstanding contribution to plurality and coexistence in society, especially in aspects related to Spanish evangelicals.
This is such a symbolic event, because Seville was the cradle of the Inquisition, created in the 15th century, which had as one of its main goals the persecution and eradication of the “Protestant heresy”. Seville was one of the most important headquarters of the institution.
During the 15th and 16th centuries, the Inquisition in Seville carried out numerous trials against people accused of heresy, executing thousands of them.
The change in Sevillian society towards a new paradigm of coexistence, respect and tolerance is shown in the naming of new streets and squares in the city with Protestant figures from Spain (such as Casiodoro de Reina, Juan Pérez de Pineda and Cipriano de Valera) with special attention to important female figures from the city's Protestant history.
The equal disposition in dealing with evangelical events, the signing of a framework agreement with the Evangelical Council of Seville and the hosting and promotion of a touristic Protestant history route of the 16th century in the city, are some of the several milestones that reflect the facts recognised by this award.
This recognition, according to the Jury, means to acknowledge the merit of “healing the wounded memory and restoring forgotten history. A city whose past was tainted by the intolerance of the Inquisition, but that now shows how to move forward to become a truly plural and inclusive society”.
The 'Unamuno, friend of Protestants Prize' has been awarded since 2006 by a Jury made up of Protestante Digital and the organisation to which it belongs, the Spanish Evangelical Alliance.
Protestante Digital is the main evangelical information and opinion media in Spain and one of the main evangelical media in Spanish worldwide, with almost 20 years of existence and over 15 million page views per year.
The Spanish Evangelical Alliance is the oldest interdenominational evangelical entity in Spain, with 146 years of existence. It is the representative of Spanish Protestantism in the European Alliance (with a presence at the EU in Brussels) and the World Alliance, with headquarters in Washington.
[title]Unamuno, friend of Protestants prize
[text] The name of the prize comes from the friendship between the well-known writer Miguel de Unamuno and prominent evangelical figures, especially the Protestant pastor Atilano Coco, whom he tried, in vain, to save from being shot by the dictator Franco, as the Spanish film 'While the War Lasts' recently recalled.
Among those who have received this distinction are writers such as Antonio Muñoz Molina; journalists; institutions such as the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria or the City Council of Santiponce, and cultural or political figures who made a significant contribution to the normalisation of religious freedom and evangelicals in Spain, such as Alberto Ruiz Gallardón, José María Calviño and José Luis Villacañas.
Las opiniones vertidas por nuestros colaboradores se realizan a nivel personal, pudiendo coincidir o no con la postura de la dirección de Protestante Digital.
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