Senegal: World conference on islamo-christian dialogue in 2005

Source: FSSPX News


The Vatican will be represented at a “very high level” and will help the other Christian bodies who are sending participants to the world conference on Islamo-Christian dialogue, scheduled for the end of 2005 at Dakar. This is what Pope John Paul II has promised to the Senegalese president Abdoulaye Wade, according to the Ivory Coast daily, Fraternité Matin.

On the initiative of the Senegalese head of state, politicians, theologians and religious of the country and of the world, will meet at Dakar in December 2005 to exchange views on ways of peaceful co-existence between the Muslim and Catholic religions. Abdoulaye Wade wants to internationalize the Senegalese model of peaceful co-existence between the two religions. In mid-January, he discussed it with the Senegalese bishops. “We all the more easily approved of the idea that the relations between the Church and the government are good,” said Mgr. Theodore Adrien Sarr, archbishop of Dakar, speaking to the journalist from the Ivory Coast daily.

The conference at Dakar will be the first of its kind in Africa. It aims at promoting the image of the country in the realm of interreligious dialogue. In this area Senegal is considered as a model, inhabited by 95% Muslims and 5% Christians, the majority of whom are Catholics.

“Interreligious dialogue has always been at the heart of our episcopal conferences,” said Archbishop Sarr. The quality of relations between the Senegalese Muslims and Catholics was manifested during Pope John Paul II’s visit in February 1992. On this occasion, Muslims prepared for the visit “with joy and enthusiasm”, said Fr. Jacques Seck, a Catholic priest wholeheartedly committed to Islamo-Christian dialogue.