The speech of the Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Parolin, on the occasion of the National Day of the Holy See at Expo 2020 in Dubai. The Cardinal: Encounter is the key to peaceful coexistence
Tiziana Campisi – Vatican News
The remarks of the Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, delivered in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, on the occasion of the National Day of the Holy See at Expo 2020, which ends on March 31, look to dialogue, exchange and international peace. First of all, the Cardinal conveyed the wishes of the Pope and his own to the country on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of its foundation and expressed his wish that the Emirati people and all those who work for them be blessed with prosperity and the peace. Below he recalls Francis’ historic apostolic visit in February 2019 and the warm welcome and hospitality extended to him.
Relations between the Holy See and the United Arab Emirates
Cardinal Parolin underlined the esteem of the Holy See for the United Arab Emirates and highlighted the many ties that have been forged and the values recognized by both parties as fundamental points of reference, despite the diversity of cultural roots and religious beliefs, and the commitment to seek a convergence that can contribute to peace within the international community. He then referred to the diplomatic relations established 15 years ago between the Holy See and the United Arab Emirates, which have now taken a new step with the recent opening of the Apostolic Nunciature in Abu Dhabi.
The Importance of the Holy See at Expo Dubai
Regarding the presence of the Holy See at Expo Dubai, the Cardinal Secretary of State underlines that it is an essentially symbolic and cultural event, without commercial purpose, aimed at promoting the ideal of peaceful coexistence between different nations, cultures and religions. The Holy See is firmly committed to promoting this ideal at the socio-cultural, educational, diplomatic and religious levels, so that concord and harmony are truly achieved for all members of the human family. The Cardinal adds that this need for peace is felt above all in the context of the many current conflicts in various parts of the world and cites the tragedy of the war in Ukraine, which is causing so much death, destruction and misery.
The role of religions and institutions for peaceful coexistence
Cardinal Parolin maintains that any peaceful coexistence must be preceded and founded on a commitment to sharing and that this requires dialogue. It also affirms that religions and their institutions can and must assume the mission of being catalysts in the vital process of raising awareness and forming consciences and specifies that the Pavilion of the Holy See recalls the fruitful capacity for dialogue, encounter and friendship historical events. of Saint Francis of Assisi and the Sultan of Egypt al-Malik al-Kāmil, who in 1219 put aside their differences to enter into dialogue, marking a new openness between our cultures and religions, and again Pope Francis and the Grand Imam of al-Azhar, Ahmad el-Tayeb, who on February 4, 2019, in Abu Dhabi, signed the Document on Human Fraternity for Peace and Coexistence in the World. A document that the Cardinal Secretary of State describes as a prophetic call, in which all peoples are invited to engage in a dialogue that goes beyond mere tolerance and establishes feelings and relationships of mutual respect and true fraternity, animated by a firm rejection of all forms of enmity and political or religious extremism.
Human brotherhood and the importance of education
Among the fruits of the Document on Human Fraternity, Cardinal Parolin mentions the Higher Committee for Human Fraternity, chaired by Cardinal Miguel Ángel Ayuso Guixot, President of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, the initiative to build the “House of Abraham family”, and the institution of the International Day of Human Fraternity.
Cardinal Parolin then spoke of the importance of education and its social and cultural force, the innate desire to know, which guides us towards the search for the good, the beautiful, the true, which also raises us towards important, and mentioned the memorandum of understanding between the United Arab Emirates Ministry of Education and the Congregation for Catholic Education, which promotes a series of projects and initiatives aimed at forming an educational alliance for the respect of human rights, commitment to the environment and the principle of solidarity.
Finally, the Cardinal Secretary of State concluded his address by noting the coincidence of the Day of the Holy See at Expo 2020 with the start date of the pontificate of Pope Francis, March 19, 2013, wishing that his great sensitivity for dialogue and for the construction of a society based on peace, equality and respect for dignity and human rights can inspire people to build bridges to bring people together and rediscover what really makes d them brothers.