Preparations for the VII Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions have been completed

Photo by: © Sputnik / Vladislav Vodnev

On September 14-15, 2022, the VII Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions will be held in the capital's Palace of Independence. To date, the preparatory stage for the Congress has been fully completed, the program and the full list of speakers have been formed, Delovoy Kazakhstan reports.

The main theme of the VII Congress is "The role of leaders of world and traditional religions in the spiritual and social development of mankind in the post-pandemic period."

The Congress will be attended by the President of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Tokayev. According to the updated data, over 100 delegations from 50 countries of the world will attend the event.

In general, the Congress gathers a highly representative composition of participants.

Among them are:

  • The head of the Vatican, Pope Francis.
  • Sheikh Muhammad Ahmad At-Tayeb, Grand Imam of Al-Azhar.
  • Yitzchak Joseph, the Chief Sephardic Rabbi of Israel.
  • David Lau, Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi of Israel.
  • Guterres Antonio, UN Secretary-General (video message).
  • Theophilus III, Most Holy and Beatitude Patriarch of the Holy City of Jerusalem, All of Palestine, Arabia, Syria, Obonpol (two shores) Jordan, Holy Zion and Cana of Galilee.
  • Mohammed bin Abdulkarim Al-Issa, Secretary General of the World Islamic League (video message).
  • Miguel Angel Moratinos, UN Deputy Secretary General, High Representative of the UN Alliance of Civilizations.
  • Abdelatif bin Abdulaziz bin Abdrahman Al-Sheikh, official representative of the Custodian of the Two Shrines of the King of Saudi Arabia, Minister of Islamic Affairs, Invocation and Instruction of Saudi Arabia.
  • Li Guangfu, Chairman of China Taoist Association
  • Jo Bailey Wells, Special Representative of the Anglican Church at the Congress of
  • Masanori Fujio, Executive Director of the Jinja Honche the Association of Shinto Shrine.
  • Azza Karam, Secretary General of the World Interreligious Organization "Religions for Peace".
  • Haifa Abu Ghazaleh, Deputy Secretary General of the League of Arab States for Social Affairs.
  • Hirotsugu Terasaki, Vice President of Soka Gakkai Buddhist Society, Executive Director of Soka Gakkai International.
  • Ahmed Bin Mohammed Al-Jarwan, Chairman of the Global Council for Tolerance and Peace.
  • David Rutstein, Secretary General of the Baha'i World Center.
  • Song Jin, Member of the International Relations Committee of the Korean Buddhist Order "Chogye", Head of the Songwans Temple in Namyangju.
  • Wade Cusack, President of the NGO "LYN Community".
  • Aaron Frenkel, Vice President of the Eurasian Congress of Jews.
  • Irina Bokova, Director General of UNESCO (2009-2017), political and public figure of the Republic of Bulgaria.
"Spiritual leaders from Islam, Christianity (all three directions – Orthodoxy, Catholicism, Protestantism), Buddhism, Judaism, Hinduism, Taoism, Zoroastrianism, Shintoism and a number of other religions and confessions are expected to participate in the VII Congress. This year, for the first time, representatives of Jainism, the ancient religion of India, are participating in the Congress. In general, during the Congress, religious leaders will gather at the same table, including those denominations that in the past had a complicated history of relationships. Thus, spiritual leaders demonstrate a role model of good will and willingness to overcome any differences. This is the main mission of the Congress" Nazym Zhangazinova, official representative of the VII Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions

As Nazym Zhangazinova highlighted, participation in the work of the Congress of UN leaders, as well as heads of reputable international organizations, is important. Thus, among the delegates of the Congress: Secretary-General of the United Nations Antonio Guterres, Secretary General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Hussein Brahim Taha, Director General of the Islamic World Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO) Salim bin Mohammed al-Malik, Chairman of the Inter-Parliamentary Union Duarte Paseku, High Representative for the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations Miguel Moratinos and others.

"The VII Congress is taking place against the backdrop of unprecedented geopolitical tensions and the growth of conflict around the world. In this situation, the efforts of our country aimed at strengthening peaceful dialogue and the policy of openness will certainly be highly appreciated by the international community. Thus, Kazakhstan will strengthen its international authority as a peacemaker country" Nazym Zhangazinova

On the sidelines of the VII Congress, not only the traditional topics for this event (religious dialogue and cooperation) will be discussed, but also the relevant agenda to modern society: the place of women in the modern world and the role of religion in achieving gender equality, quality education and religious enlightenment, the contradictions of digital development and the problems of digital inequality. Foreign experts and authoritative religious figures will share their vision of this topical issue.

The outcome of the Congress will be the adoption of a Declaration, the content of which will reflect the vision of current problems of our time, possible ways to resolve them, as well as the intentions of the leaders of world religions, their appeal to the international community. The Declaration will be distributed as an official document of the 77th session of the UN General Assembly.

As previously reported, during the official visit of the Pope during the Congress, a large-scale religious mass is expected to be held - the main liturgical service in the Latin rite of the Roman Catholic Church. Representatives of any religion and denomination will be able to attend the Mass. Thousands of pilgrims from different countries of the world will take part in the prayer service.

It should be added that the First Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions was held in the capital of Kazakhstan in 2003. Subsequent Congresses were held every three years in 2006, 2009, 2012, 2015 and 2018 and became one of the largest international events in the history of independent Kazakhstan.

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