Loading
Interfaith workshop shows charity as 'hallmark' of Christian life
Buddhist Students at human dignity workshop in Sriracha, Thailand. Credit: Antonio Anup Gonsalves/CNA.
Buddhist Students at human dignity workshop in Sriracha, Thailand. Credit: Antonio Anup Gonsalves/CNA.
By Antonio Anup Gonsalves
Facebook Twitter Google+ Pinterest Addthis

.- A group of 230 Buddhist students from schools throughout the diocese of Chantaburi, Thailand, learned about the importance of charity in a recent three-day workshop on human dignity.

“Charity has no religion,” said Father Joseph Phongsak, director of the Commission on Evangelization and Inter-religious Dialogue for the Chantaburi Diocese. “It is a universal, common element embodied in every…major religion.”

He called charity a “hallmark of the Christian faith” and a “cardinal epitome of our way of life and works,” adding that it plays a critical role in “defend(ing) the dignity of humanity.”

Fr. Phongsak told CNA that the human dignity workshop aims to share “God’s infinite love” and the inherent value and “dignity of each human being” that are contained in “Catholic social doctrines.”

These have a close “correlation” with the values enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, passed on December 12, 1948, he said.

These rights recognize inherent human “dignity” and the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family as the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world, he explained.

Speaking on the importance of engaging members of the other faiths, Fr. Phongsak noted that “94 percent of the population in Thailand is Buddhist.”

“We need to know each other and not live under misconceptions of false propaganda,” he said.

He described the workshop, held at the Sriracha Pastoral Center, as an “opportunity to open our doors, sharing God’s love, faith and the liturgy that impels us to be a testimony of love and charity.”

Cooperation “builds mutual trust and creates a podium for interreligious dialogue,” he said, noting the “goodwill” and support from many of the children’s parents.

Quoting former U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan, he observed, “Human rights education is much more than a lesson in schools or a theme for a day; it is a process to equip people with the tools they need to live lives of security and dignity.” 

The second phase of the program will take place in the coming months, offering participants practical exposure through trips to various Catholic charitable social centers in the area.

Tags: Charity, Interreligious dialogue, Thailand

Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

An Indian contribution to the Vatican's Synod on the Family
An Indian contribution to the Vatican's Synod on the Family
Christ Cathedral CNA video Sept 2014
Alejandro Bermudez of CNA accepts ice bucket challenge
'The Real Albania,' remembering those who fled
Pope Francis in Albania, "one of the most important visits of the post-communist era in Albania"
Pope Francis greets paralyzed man who risked all to see him
Franciscans on the banks of the Tiber in Rome, working for the New Evangelization
Pilgrimage from Czech Republic to Assisi and Rome for intentions
Testimony of young Indian who met Pope in Korea
Preparations of the Closing Mass of 6th Asian Youth Day
Missionary of Charity, Korea
Testimony of Christian Love during Pope's Visit to Korea
Religious Sisters in South Korea react to Pope Francis kissing a baby
Warm atmosphere during Holy Mass at Daejeon World Cup Stadium
Images inside Pope Francis flight to South Korea
The tombs of the early Christians
Missionaries of Africa, called "the White Fathers"
Italian youth give testimony after mission to Peru
Interview with Iraqi Ambassador to the Holy See on the persecution of Christians
New book 'The Vatican unknown'
Nov
1

Liturgical Calendar

November 1, 2014

All Saints

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Lk 14:1-6

Gospel
Date
10/31/14
10/29/14
10/28/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Phil 1: 1-11
Gospel:: Lk 14: 1-6

Saint of the Day

St. Romuald »

Saint
Date
10/31/14

Homily of the Day

Lk 14:1-6

Homily
Date
10/31/14
10/29/14
10/28/14