WelCom April 2020:
The New Zealand Catholic Bishops’ Committee for Interfaith Relations wrote a letter, 12 March, for parishes and wider Aotearoa communities to reflect on the tragic events at the two mosques in Christchurch, a year on.
The letter expresses a call to be people of peace across all divides and to recall the events of March 15, 2019, so that such a thing may never happen again. It calls for us to respond ‘bound to peace and prayer’, to have courage and enthusiasm to ‘actually enter into rich dialogue in the everyday life of living alongside one another’, to seek opportunity to ‘share our understandings, joys and concerns in a spirit of openness and trust’, and as people of different faiths to ‘commit ourselves against hatred and for peace’.
The committee’s letter concludes with a quote from Pope Francis and Ahmed Al-Tayyeb in their shared document on Human Fraternity.
‘As Pope Francis and Ahmed Al-Tayyeb capture so powerfully, “Faith leads a believer to see in the other a brother or sister to be supported and loved.” This is how we are called to respond, this is what it means to be people of God.’
The committee’s letter is on the NZCBC website at: www.catholic.org.nz/assets/Uploads/March-15-2020-A-day-of-prayer-and-of-peace.pdf
A booklet from the committee, Promoting Interfaith Relations, is online at: https://www.catholic.org.nz/assets/PromotingInterfaithRelations.pdf