Pope Encouraged Bishops from South Eastern Asia to Practice Interreligious Dialogue

Source: FSSPX News


On June 6, Benedict XVI encouraged the bishops of Malaysia, Brunei, and Singapore, on their ad limina visit, to make interreligious dialogue progress while not giving up the preaching of the Gospel.

In his address delivered in English, Benedict XVI asked the prelates of these three countries where Muslims and Buddhists are a large majority, to “carry forward this important work [interreligious dialogue], exploring every avenue open to you.”

 “I realize that not all the territories you represent offer the same degree of religious liberty, and many of you, for example, encounter serious difficulties in promoting Christian religious instruction in schools. Do not become disheartened.” And he went on to invite the bishops to “open and honest dialogue with Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, and the followers of other religions present in your respective countries.”

Malaysia, Brunei, and Singapore are located to the south east of the Asiatic continent. Malaysia is a constitutional monarchy, with Islam as the State religion: 60% of the inhabitants are Muslim, some 20% are Buddhist, 9% are Christian, and 6% Hindus. Islam is also the official religion of the Sultanate of Brunei, where 67% of the inhabitants are Muslim, 13% Buddhist, and 10% Christians. The Republic of Singapore is a  State-city located at the tip of the Malaysian peninsula. It is about 250 square miles, and is the center for sea traffic. It numbers 42% Buddhists, 15% Muslims, 8% Taoists, 4%Hindus and as many Catholics. (Sources: Apic/Imedia)