change language
you are in: home - ecumenis...dialogue - internat...or peace - antwerp ...e future contacting usnewsletterlink

Support the Community

  

From indonesia to Cuba, from Poland to Burkina Faso, the new photogalleries of the Christmas lunches of Sant'Egidio in the world

New pictures are still coming from all the continents, watch them with our interactive map!

2017, the children from all over the world ask for peace

Photogallery of the marches of January 1st

Christmas Lunch with the poor: let's prepare a table table that reaches the whole world


 
printable version
September 7 2014 17:00 | Stadsschouwburg

Long-lasting peace is possible.


Kris Peeters


Co-Formateur of the Federal Government of Belgium

 
TOESPRAAK DOOR KRIS PEETERS
KONINKLIJK CO-FORMATEUR

CONFERENTIE “VREDE IS DE TOEKOMST”
SANT’EGIDIO
7 september 2014

Monseigneur Bonny,
Mr. President of the European Council,
Mr. Mayor,
Mr. Riccardi – Founder of the Sant’Egidio Community,
Madam Chairwoman,
Honorable ministers and religious leaders,
Ladies and gentlemen,

To some people, the title of this conference may seem out of tune with the world we live in. A world that sees too many conflicts. Too many victims and refugees. But that is the wrong conclusion. Because especially at times like these, we have to continue to believe that ‘peace is the future’.

At times like these, more than ever, people who strive for peace, have to join forces. Across religions, across cultures, across borders.

Long-lasting peace is possible. It is a feeling we all share. And it is a point that has been proven right here, in Belgium. Today, we are the capital of the European Union, arguably the most impressive peace project man has ever seen. But this has not always been the case. Once, we were known as Europe’s battleground.

Indeed, Ladies and Gentlemen, our country is the example that long-lasting peace need not be an idle hope.  But we are also proof that “peace” is a verb. We must remain ever vigilant for latent conflicts. For groups who want to misuse ethnic, religious or other differences in order to set people against each other. We need to continue to explore how our past experiences can continue to offer lessons for peace today.

Therefore, civil authorities and many organizations in our country are devoting considerable attention to the commemoration of the outbreak of World War I, exactly a century ago. We must not forget that a hundred years ago religion played a role in our conflict. On both sides of the trenches, "Gott mit uns," "Dieu le veut," "God with us" or "de Heer staat ons bij" was chanted. All too often such slogans drown out the voices of religious leaders who repeatedly call for peace.

Emmanuel Levinas once wrote how much "true, deep peace" has to do with the "mutual proximity" of people. To use the words of Levinas, we must “keep before our eyes and shoulder the vulnerability of the Other."

This international interreligious dialogue and prayer meeting is a wonderful addition to the wide range of peace initiatives undertaken to commemorate the centenary of the Great War.

I also would like to warmly congratulate Sant'Egidio, and I wish each of you a fruitful, productive, and peaceful conference.

Thank you very much.

PROGRAMMA
PDF

LIVE STREAMING



RELATED NEWS
January 2 2017

2017, the children from all over the world ask for peace


Photogallery of the marches of January 1st
IT | EN | ES | DE | FR | PT | CA
October 24 2011

The Spirit of Assisi: 25 Years of Prayer for Peace

IT | EN | ES | DE | FR | PT | CA | NL | RU
March 21 2011

Jos (Nigeria): a Conference on peace, the service to the poor and the intereligious dialogue

IT | EN | ES | DE | FR | PT | CA | NL
all related news

NEWS HIGHLIGHTS
January 16 2017 | LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM
SAVE THE DATE

ART AS A TOOL: THE ART OF EXCHANGING WORLDS. A seminar in London on combining art and disability


Thursday 19 January at 7pm at the Italian Cultural Institute, 39 Belgrave Square.
January 10 2017

Christmas with the poor in Russia and Ukraine: the warmth of friendship in the cold winter


Pictures from the countries of Byzantine tradition, where on January 7th Christmas was celebrated
IT | EN | ES | DE | FR | RU
January 9 2017

Zygmunt Bauman: a great humanist has passed away. He engaged in dialogue between nonbelievers and believers, aimed at living together and peace

IT | EN | ES | DE | FR | RU

ASSOCIATED PRESS
January 2 2017
Gazzetta di Parma
Le vie del centro invase dai colori della pace
January 2 2017
Il Secolo XIX
Marcia della pace, in 1.500 con i profughi
January 2 2017
La Nazione
Fiaccole accese per la pace
January 2 2017
Aachener Zeitung
Zahlreiche Kerzen symbolisieren die Brandherde auf der Erde
January 2 2017
Vatican Insider
Congo, Sant’Egidio: soddisfazione per l’accordo sulle elezioni
all press-related