Chiang Mai (Agenzia Fides) - Young ambassadors of peace in Asia: this is the theme of the seminar which began at the headquarters of the Christian Conference of Asia (CCA) in Chiang Mai on Monday, 29 May 2017. The training is being attended by 30 young people from various Asian countries: as Fides learns, this is a training session aimed at providing peace education in interfaith perspectives through a variety of learning methodologies and interactive sessions with inter-religious leaders and scholars. During the days, young people will visit various Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim and Sikh religious shrines and monasteries in Chiang Mai city and its outskirts.
The training focuses on enabling the youth as agents of change in "peace building and conflict transformation in local communities through intercultural and interfaith approaches".
The General Secretary of the CCA, Mathews George Chunakara outlined the interconnectedness of the concepts of "peace with justice" in the Asian religions and spirituality: "All religious traditions agree upon the central idea of peace on earth and the message of breaking the dividing walls of hostility. Religious values affirm that human beings are created in the image of God and the recognition of human rights and dignity is central to the principle of peace with justice. However, this conference aims to motivate young people in Asia to be promoters of peace in local contexts", he said.
Joseph Manickam, Director of the Institute of Religion Culture and Peace (IRCP), spoke on Interreligious Engagement for Peace and Justice: "Peace is a journey and it starts from going from intolerance to tolerance to engagement.To be able to transform conflicts, we must all talk in a common language", said Manickam.
The CCA is a body and forum of continued cooperation between churches and Christian associations of different faiths, existing in different Asian countries. It works for the unity of Christian communities in Asia and is a Christian response to the challenges of Asian societies, in rapid transformation. (PA-SD) (Agenzia Fides 30/5/2017)