.- This morning, members of Catholic cultural centers descended on Sarajevo to begin discussions on the theme, “The Challenge of a new Cultural Dialogue in the context of Globalization.“
The meeting, which is scheduled to last until Sunday, is being organized by the Pontifical Council for Culture, in collaboration with the "Hrvatsko Kulturno Drustvo Napredak" Center of Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina.
Cardinal Paul Poupard, president of the Pontifical Council for Culture, officially commenced the gathering this morning. According to the Vatican, it is part of a series of such international encounters, the first of which began in Barcelona, Spain, in 1996 to look at the challenges faced by Catholic cultural centers in the Mediterranean.
Some of the key themes which participants will discuss are that of dialogue with Byzantine culture and with Muslims in light of migration. They will also explore ways to dialogue with non-believers in a program centered on secularization in the West, and the heritage of communism in the East.
This weekend’s meeting place, Sarajevo’s "Napredak" (Progress) Center boasts two Nobel prize-winners (Ivo Andric, in literature, and Vladimir Prelog, in science) in their alumni list.
The center, which was founded in 1902 and today has 20,000 members in 66 branches throughout the world, is located within the Archdiocese of Sarajevo. During the communist years in that country, it was forced to close but reopened in 1990. It remained closed under the communist regime but reopened in 1990.