2010, ‘Milestones and Signposts in Interfaith Relations: the View from Christianity’. Australian eJournal of Theology 16 (2010) 10-17.

‘Milestones and Signposts in Interfaith Relations: the View from Christianity’. Australian eJournal of Theology 16 (2010) 10-17.

I would like to approach this theme by looking at two outstanding figures,

Francis of Assisi and Pope John XXIII. I will say a few words about their lives

and draw some conclusions.

etc. ….

From this discussion of St Francis and John XXIII, four salient points can be

made:

  1. Interreligious dialogue depends on an experience of powerlessness:

chosen by Francis during the Crusades, and imposed on Archbishop

Roncalli during World War II.

  1. Like St Francis who witnesses the piety of the Sultan, the Second Vatican

Council states that ‘the Catholic Church rejects nothing of what is true and

holy in these religions’.

  1. Like St Francis who identifies himself as a Christian and proclaims to the

Sultan the central teachings of the faith, the Council speaks of ‘Christians

… witnessing to their own faith and way of life’.

  1. Like St Francis who sought to serve, Christians are to ‘acknowledge,

preserve and encourage the spiritual and moral truths found among non-

Christians, also their social life and culture.’

In short both Francis of Assisi and John XXIII are happy to be powerless,

perceptive, servant and faithful. Those involved in interreligious dialogue might

do well to follow their example.

About interfaithashram

Rev. Dr. John Dupuche is a Roman Catholic Priest, a senior lecturer at MCD University of Divinity, and Honorary Fellow at Australian Catholic University. His doctorate is in Sanskrit in the field of Kashmir Shaivism. He is chair of the Catholic Interfaith Committee of the Archdiocese of Melbourne and has established a pastoral relationship with the parishes of Lilydale and Healesville. He is the author of 'Abhinavagupta: the Kula Ritual as elaborated in chapter 29 of the Tantraloka', 2003; 'Jesus, the Mantra of God', 2005; 'Vers un tantra chrétien' in 2009; translated as 'Towards a Christian Tantra' in 2009. He has written many articles. He travels to India each year. He lives in an interfaith ashram.
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