World Interfaith Harmony Week is an annual event in the first week of February each year. This is an activity supported by member-states of the United Nations. This year, 2017, there are many events in Australia and Oceania celebrating World Interfaith Harmony Week. Religions for Peace Australia will be conducting several events in observance of World Interfaith Harmony Week
Celebrating Mercy with Believers of Other Religions is a concise and simple compendium, edited by the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, mainly addressed to Bishops’ Conferences and through them, to all Catholics. At the same time, we would be pleased if this proves useful to believers of other religions.
The Human Rights Sub-Committee of the Parliament’s Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade has commenced an inquiry into the protection and promotion of the human right to freedom of religion or belief worldwide, including in Australia. The Committee is at present accepting submissions until 10 February 2017.
Pope Francis gave one address to an Australian foundation in Rome on Saturday 14 January. Pope Francis spoke to participants of the ‘Round Table’ of the Global Foundation in Rome. According to its website, launched in Melbourne, Australia, in 1998, the Global Foundation, a not-for-profit organisation, was born when some of Australia’s leading citizens wished to confront the challenges and opportunities presented by an emerging world. The global network brings together influential global figures focused on serving the longer-term public good and backed by private sector and philanthropic sponsors and a diverse membership base.
Swami Vivekananda Jayanti celebrates the birthday of Swami Vivekananda. Swami Vivekananda’s birthday falls on the Paush Krishna Saptami, the 7th day after the full moon day in the Hindu month of Paush. Therefore the date varies from year to year. According to the English calendar or the generally used Indian Calendar, Swami Vivekananda was born on January 12, 1863. In 2017, the date of the birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda as per Hindu Lunar Calendar Tithi is on January 19. In 2017, it is the 154th birth anniversary.
Pope Francis, during his annual greeting to the Diplomatic Corps, appealed to all Religious Leaders to join in ‘Reaffirming Unequivocally that One can never Kill in God’s Name”.
Huston Smith, religious studies scholar and bestselling author of The World’s Religions (originally released, in 1958, as The Religions of Man) and Why Religion Matters, as well as Buddhism: A Concise Introduction, which Smith co-wrote with Philip Novak, died on December 30 at the age of 97.
Hanukkah is the festival on which Jews celebrate their victory in the fight for religious freedom more than two thousand years ago. Tragically that fight is no less important today – and not only for Jews, but for people of all faiths.