Burkina Faso: Maintain dialogue with Islam “at all costs”

Source: FSSPX News


The Episcopal Commission for Dialogue with Islam (ECDI), at Burkina Faso, is in favor of maintaining “dialogue at all costs” with the country’s Muslims. It has called on the country rulers for measures to avoid the use of religion for political ends.

ECDI met at Ouagadougou from November 4 to 7 2003. In a communiqué published at the end of the session by the Burkinabé daily, L’Observateur Paalga, it evoked a radical Islamic movement, which is shaking the world, nourishing a hardening in relations with other religious confessions. It is leading to amalgams and inciting fear. In this context, we must “maintain dialogue at all costs”. It is imperative to sustain these efforts at dialogue, undertaken by so many believers of different burkinabé religious communities. It is possible for Christians and Muslims to live together “in harmony”.

The Commission reminded Christians of their duty to analyze crisis situations, to know the religion of others. It reminded them also of the necessity of favoring the dialogue of life and of collaboration. Its members have said they have noticed, in the majority of the country’s provinces, “amicable relations in the ordinary life of human communities”. It is nonetheless true, they lament, that it is also noticeable that “a radical Islamic movement is shaking the world, following the violent events of which the media speaks and which are having repercussions in our country.” “It is the vitality of Christian communities and their courage in very difficult situations, which is the best response to Islamic propaganda”. All the participants at this meeting have recommended to each of the different confessions to work “to deepen the teaching of its religion’s doctrine.” Because, they emphasized, the promotion of peace in the spirit of inter-religious dialogue, demands a perfect knowledge of one’s own religion and also that of one’s neighbor.”

ECDI is thus following the example given by the Interconfessional Meeting of Young Christians, held in Ouagadougou from July 21 to 24 2003, on the theme: “Inter-religious relations and peace in Burkina Faso: what place for young believers?”