Vatican City – Officials of the Vatican’s Pontifical Council for Inter-religious Dialogue are in India participating in initiatives organized in cooperation with the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India (CBCI).
Fr. Indunil Kodithuwakku, and Indian priest Fr. Santiago Michael are joining Archbishop Salvatore Pennacchio, Apostolic Nuncio to India in participating in the events.
The first of these meetings concluded on Friday in the eastern city of Bodh Gaya, where Buddha gained enlightenment over 2,500 year ago. The Feb. 12-13 conference, the 5th such meeting between Christians and Buddhists, discussed the theme, “Buddhists and Christians Together Fostering Fraternity.”
Participants from both faiths came from Sri Lanka, Thailand, Korea, Japan, Myanmar, Mongolia, Taiwan and India, reported radiovaticana.
The next event is scheduled Feb. 14-17 in Varanasi, sacred to Hindus, where the Vatican officials will meet their Hindu, Muslim, Buddhist, Sikh and Jain counterparts, on the theme, “Celebrating Diversity of Religions to Foster a World of Peace and Love”. The event is to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the promulgation of “Nostra Aetate”, the Second Vatican Council’s declaration on the Catholic Church’s relations with Non-Christian Religions.
On Sunday an inter-faith prayer meeting is scheduled at St. Mary’s Cathedral Campus in Varanasi, organized by the Pontifical Council, the CBCI and the Diocese of Varanasi.