SA bishops Strengthen Ties with Other Faith Leaders
The bishops of Southern Africa set aside time during their plenary session to meet with leaders from other faiths, saying this was especially important in the year of the bicentenary of the Catholic Church in South Africa.
At St John Vianney Seminary in Pretoria they met with representatives from various Christian communities as well as Muslim, Jewish, Bahai, Buddhist and Hindu leaders.
During the meeting, the bishops and faith leaders discussed issues of common concern and ways of cooperating, said SACBC communications officer Fr Paul Tatu CSS. They also had a time of prayer together.
“We are all affected by the same challenges,” Bishop Victor Phalana of Klerksdorp, chairman of the bishops’ Department for Ecumenism, told the Spotlight.Africa news site.
“We were saying, that we need to promote unity and peace in our country. We need to encourage our country to come back to its senses and to values. Thank God that despite our different faiths there are common values among us,” he said.
“We have to do something concrete, come closer together, respecting each other’s dignity, respecting our diversity, and work towards our common goal.
“That goal is to build peace and unity, and encourage our country to move towards progress and development. Our people are our concern,” Bishop Phalana told Spotlight.