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Pope Francis joins Muslim and Jewish leaders in united day of prayer to “the All-Creator”

The Catholic head backs an initiative for “believers of all religions to unite spiritually (…) to implore God to help humanity overcome the pandemic”. A new inter-religious platform with an ambitious project in Abu Dhabi is behind the initiative.

FUENTES Vatican News, Higher Committee for Human Fraternity AUTOR 5/Evangelical_Focus ROME 14 DE MAYO DE 2020 13:18 h
Members of the leadership of the Higher Committee for Human Fraternity. Photo: website [link]Higher Committee for Human Fraternity[/link]

Roman Catholics around the world joined a “day or prayer, fasting and works of charity” organised by a new inter-religious platform lead by five Arabic Muslim leaders, a Jewish Rabbi, and two high-ranking Vatican representatives.

The Higher Committee for Human Fraternity (HCHF) had called to set apart 14 May for seeking unity in prayer against the Covid-19 pandemic. “We should not forget to seek refuge in God, the All-Creator, as we face such a severe crisis”, the HCHF said as it announced the initiative. “Each one, from wherever they are and according to the teachings of their religion, faith, or sect, should implore God to lift this pandemic off us and the entire world, to rescue us all from this adversity”.

Pope Francis - who is represented in the HCHF leading group by his Personal Secretary, Monsignor Yoannis Lahzi, and the President of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, Cardinal Miguel Ángel Ayuso Guixot – underlined the importance of the united prayer inititative: “Remember: all believers together, believers of all different traditions”.

The Pope said he was joining the ecumenic prayer initiative because “prayer is a universal value”, and therefore he supported that “believers of all religions unite spiritually this 14 May for a day of prayer, fasting, and works of charity, to implore God to help humanity overcome the coronavirus pandemic”.

On 14 May, the head of the Roman Catholic Church posted a prayer on Twitter, asking God to “end to this tragedy, this pandemic, as well as the pandemics of hunger, war, and children without an education. This we ask as brothers and sisters, everyone together”.

What is the Higher Committee for Human Fraternity?

The Higher Committee for Human Fraternity is formed by five influential Muslim leaders, two Vatican leaders, a Jewish Rabbi from the US, and former head of the Unesco Irina Bukova.

The HCHF started its public activities in 2019, and works to “engage a larger community of people of faith and goodwill to begin a bold, new journey toward a more peaceful future for all”.

According to its official website, the platform “is currently in the early stages of its formation, establishing the groundwork for its future activities”.

But one of the main projects is the building in Abu Dhabi (United Arab Emirates) of what has been called the Abrahamic Family House. It is, the HCHC says, “a beacon of mutual understanding, harmonious coexistence and peace among people of faith and goodwill. It consists of a mosque, church, synagogue and educational center”.




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