Target: Pope Francis
Goal: Thank the Pope for promoting religious harmony by example
The Pope recently partnered with a number of non-Catholic religious leaders in Istanbul, Turkey for a series of events aimed at promoting interfaith harmony and support. His actions come at a time when strife and violence between people of different faiths have reached a boiling point. Thank Pope Francis for leading by example and spreading a message of religious cooperation and understanding.
Pope Francis recently traveled to Istanbul, Turkey for a number of state and religious events. Among them were a series of meetings with Istanbul’s Muslim leader as well as the leader of the world’s Orthodox Christians. With Rahmi Yaran, the Grand Mufti of Istanbul, Pope Francis faced east towards Mecca and prayed in the city’s Sultan Ahmet Mosque, sharing words with the Grand Mufti about the common cause and brotherhood between Muslims and Catholics. Later, Pope Francis met with Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, leader of the Orthodox Christian Church, where the two figures led a service at an Orthodox church and renewed their commitment to reunite the two branches of Christianity that they represent.
Pope Francis’s efforts are of particular significance given Turkey’s close proximity with Syria and Iraq, countries that have been ravaged by violence brought about by ISIS, sending millions of refugees through Turkey’s borders. His message, and those of his peers, provides a strong counterpoint to the message sent out by ISIS and other violent religious extremists. Sign the petition below to make sure the Pope understands that people all over the world appreciate his messages of religious cooperation.
Dear Pope Francis,
I am writing you today about your recent trip to Istanbul, Turkey. I was very pleased to see you working with both the leader of the city’s Muslim community and the leader of the world’s Orthodox Christian community on events that highlighted harmony and support between different religions and sects. That message, as I’m sure you know, is in dire need in this day and age.
Not far from where you were in Turkey, ISIS rages in Syria and Iraq, co-opting a religion to justify its abominable acts of violence. Similar conflicts are taking place in other locations throughout that region and around the globe. Indeed, scholars argue that religion has resurged in global importance to its highest point since before the 20th century.
For all these reasons, it was great to see a person of such global significance lead by example and demonstrate proactive interfaith support to an audience around the world, despite any negative backlash they might get from more conservative factions in their congregation. Thank you, Pope Francis, for providing such a powerful counterpoint to the religious violence we see all too often.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Ctruongngoc via Wikimedia Commons