The meeting, which has been promoted by the Community of Sant’Egidio and the Church of Cyprus, takes place in Nicosia from 16 to 18 November.
The Cyprus date is a further leg of the pilgrimage undertaken by the Community of Sant’Egidio to carry forward the legacy of the historic World Day of Prayer for Peace convened in Assisi by Pope John Paul II on October 27, 1986.
Over these twenty-two years, invitations from the Community have led men and women from diverse cultures and religions onto the pathway of encounter, dialogue and prayer for peace. The pilgrimage has called on various locations around the world, spreading the “Spirit of Assisi”, creating ties of friendship and cooperation, testifying to a common will to create a culture of coexistence.
On opening the last meeting, held in Naples in October 2007, Pope Benedict 16th stated: “In respecting the differences between the various faiths, we are all called upon to work for peace and to make a concrete effort to further reconciliation between nations. This is the authentic “Spirit of Assisi" …religions can and must offer a precious resource for constructing a peaceful humanity, because they speak of peace being at the heart of humankind”.
The Cyprus Meeting constitutes part of this commitment.
The island, lying at the heart of the Mediterranean, touched on by the preaching of St Paul the Apostle, place of encounter between a variety of cultures and religions, will host several hundred figures from every part of the world: representatives of the worlds of religion, of culture and of politics. They will enliven around 20 “round tables”, open – as is the tradition at these encounters – to participation by the public.
The Closing Ceremony will take place on November 18 in the heart of the capital, Nicosia; it will feature the proclamation the Appeal for Peace.
As in previous years, this site will follow the event via a live video web-link.