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Interreligious Dialogue at the Austrian Embassy

The Austrian Embassy organized an interreligious meeting between high-profile representatives of various religious groups

July 21st, 2016
Daniel Erhardt, News from Berlin

Representatives of the Christian Protestant, Greek Orthodox and Muslim communities from three neighboring countries met to discuss actual matters concerning religion, society and politics.

June 30th saw an interreligious meeting being held at the Austrian Embassy. It was attended by representatives of three different religious communities to discuss matters of current importance in religion society and politics. This event was of notorious importance given the sensitive political, interethnic and interreligious situation that two of the present countries at the meeting, Germany and Austria, are going through at the moment. Therefore, the need for emphasizing dialogue as a tool for understanding was mentioned as key throughout the event.

Among the participants there were the representatives of the Protestant Church of Germany, as well as Bishop Michael BŁnker, Bishop of the Protestant Church of Austria, who specially flew in from Carinthia for the event. On behalf of the Helvetic Confederation, the Board President Gottfried Locher, also President of the Federation of Swiss Protestant Churches, was present.

Other attending representatives from Germany were the Archbishop of Berlin, Heiner Koch; His Eminence the Metropolitan Augoustinos of Germany, representing the Greek Orthodox community; the Chairman of the Muslim Board of Germany, Aiman A. Mazyek.

One of the highlights of the event was the presenting of the Great Golden Honor Medal with the Star for Merit to the Republic of Austria on behalf of H.E. Ambassador Nikolaus Marschik. It was presented to the Guest of Honor, the Chairman of the Board of the Protestant Church in Germany, Nikolaus Schneider. The distinction was awarded unto him by the Federal President of the Republic of Austria, Heinz Fischer, due to the merits achieved fostering the collaboration and collective work between the Protestant congregations of both the Federal Republic of Germany and the Republic of Austria.


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