Ambrosian Center of Dialogue for Religions
Around the spirit given by Cardinal Martini, a group of young professionals coordinated by Don Augusto Casolo set up the Ambrosian Centre of Documentation for Religions (CADR) in order to help the integration and coexistence of new arrivals of the Islamic religion with Italian citizens. The ultimate aim was to get to know each other in mutual respect for integration and coexistence in the territory in respect of customs and traditions, but above all to make known the spirit of the Constitution of the Italian state as far as it differs from Islamic laws. With the experiences changing over the time, a new course was reached, specifying the denomination in Centro Ambrosiano di Dialogo con le Religioni www.cadr.it to underline above all the aspect of KNOWLEDGE TO CONVIVE AND BUILD PEACE, with the participation of more people who over the years have lived the commitment to inter-religious dialogue coordinated by Don Giampiero Alberti.
Europe Near East Center E.N.E.C
At the same time, under the impulse of Don Nicola Bux, an International Association for relations with the Near East was founded in Bari https://www.associazioneenec.it/ to promote awareness of the link of European Christian civilization with the Churches of the Near East through conferences, round tables, studies, research, visits, pilgrimages, trips and meetings. Last but not least, it promotes information and internal debate on the situation in which Christians are confronted with realities different from their own as minorities or new realities.
Following the the spirit of Cardinal Martini’s letter “Noi e l’Islam” 1990, Giuseppe Samir Eid a first hour member of the CADR team has gathered in the web site www.dialogoislamocristiano.com a collection of writings that relate to the relationship between peoples of different faiths and cultures, in particular with regard to the characteristics of the Arab Muslim world principally for the benefit of students. These writings are intended to provide the tools for social inclusion of the migratory flux, shed light on human rights and the condition of Christian life in the Islamic world I come from.
The published articles intend to provide the tools for a social inclusion of the migratory flow, shed light on human rights and the condition of life of Christians in the Islamic world from which the author comes. Knowledge of others, cultural and religious diversity are primary ingredients for create peace in the hearts of men everywhere, a prerequisite for a peaceful coexistence and convinced citizenship in the territory.
Immigration of the 1980s
Italy was never an immigration country until the 1980s, as the preferred destinations of African migrants were to French and English-speaking countries. The Italian population was very uniform as a whole and included few foreign elements of language, race and religion. The strong population growth in Africa pushed the younger population to go to Italy; at the beginning of the year 2000 the number of immigrants in Italy was just over one million with one third Muslims. Already in the 80’s Cardinal Martini with foresight entitled his letter for Christmas 1990 “Islam and us” preparing citizens to welcome and live with populations of different cultures and religions. Islam was unknown to most people, the Letter invited Italian citizens to welcome, meet newcomers, help them to integrate into the new Ambrosian social context. The example was followed throughout Italy with similar activities.
Scope of this blog
Following the spirit of the Letter Noi e l’Islam (Us and Islam), Giuseppe Samir Eid, member of the CADR’s first-hour team, has collected on the website www.Dialogoislamocristiano.com some publications and reflections on the relationship between populations of different faiths and cultures from the Arab Muslim world, mainly for the benefit of students. They aim to provide the tools for a social inclusion of the migration flow, to shed light on human rights and the living conditions of Christians in the Islamic world from which the author comes. The knowledge of the other, of cultural and religious differences, are primary ingredients to create peace in people’s hearts, a convinced citizenship on the territory, premises for a peaceful coexistence between the two shores of the Mediterranean. It is hoped that the same feeling of mutual attention and respect will be reflected in the laws of the Arab world.
To whom it is addressed
It is a useful tool in the hands of Educators, schools, social centres, libraries, are propitious areas to prepare the new recruits to act as a bridge between the cultures of the two shores of the Mediterranean. It is equally useful for those who are preparing to visit the Near East for tourism and pilgrimages. Quoting Monsignor Gianfranco Ravasi, it is a valuable tool for knowledge and action for all those who want to find the common springs, despite the diversity of the routes of the historical ‘rivers’.
Immigration to the West of Moslems and Christians – Islamic Centres – Mentality of Western youth – Words of Cardinal Martini- Reception of immigrants in Europe – cultural integration, Professional formation- Spiritual service to believers in the one God- Mosque and church together- Looking at history from the Islamic conquest to the twenty-first century -Christians in Muslim society- Mixed marriages- The invisible knots in the coexistence between Christians and Muslims- Economic-cultural underdevelopment and extremism- The West seen by Muslim Arabs- For a concrete commitment to living under the same roof- Common values and divergences.
To contemplate in the bilateral agreements with the Arab States the promotion of the values of civil and religious freedom without any discrimination, in order to create a culture of equal rights and sharing of duties among all citizens without exclusions. It is crucial to bridge the gap that still today culturally separates the Islamic world from the Western world in the hope that differences will finally be transformed from opportunities for discrimination into instruments of mutual enrichment.
Free web translation from the original in Italian