Vatican City, Aug 31, 2012 / 13:08 pm America/Denver (CNA).
The world’s fastest man, Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt, has been invited to address a Vatican conference on religious liberty.
“We look for a most fundamental common ground among different religions,” conference organizer Giovanna Abbiati told CNA Aug. 31. “Most of all we’d like to focus on the absolute value of religious freedom as a human right.”
The TEDx Via della Conciliazione conference will be held in Rome on April 19, 2013, and will focus on the theme “Religious freedom today.” It is being coordinated under the auspices of the Pontifical Council for Culture’s “Courtyard of the Gentiles” outreach, which aims to create a “dialogue between believers and non-believers.”
Those already confirmed as participants are drawn from the worlds of sport, music, culture and academia, including Vlade Divac, the former NBA basketball player; Gloria Estefan, the Cuban-born American pop singer; and the Japanese architect Etsuro Sotoo.
It is the invitation of Bolt, however, that has made the headlines. The 26-year-old recently won three gold medals at the London Olympics. As a Catholic, Bolt is known for making the Sign of the Cross before racing competitively. He also bears the middle name Saint Leo.