Pope to Al Azhar: ‘Violence Is Negation of Every Authentic Religious Expression’

While speaking to an international conference on peace at Al-Azhar, the highest theological and religious institution of Sunni Islam in the world and the oldest Islamic University, alongside its Grand Imam, Pope Francis said this, noting: “Above all and especially in our day, the religions are called to respect this imperative, since, for all our need of the Absolute, it is essential that we reject any “absolutizing” that would justify violence.”

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Pope Francis meets top Egyptian cleric at Vatican, ending five-year freeze in relations


Pope Francis has met the grand imam of Egypt’s highest Islamic authority, Al-Azhar, looking to heal Vatican relations with the influential centre of Sunni Muslim learning after dialogue was frozen five years ago. The 1,000-year-old mosque and university centre cut contacts with the Vatican in 2011 over what it said were repeated insults towards Islam from Francis’s predecessor, Pope Benedict.

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