“I do believe spiritual leaders of different faiths are establishing contacts”, the meeting of Patriarch Kirill and Pope Francis in Kazakhstan can be peacemaking, Anton Ignatenko hopes
The meeting of Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and Pope Francis, if it takes place in Kazakhstan, could become a peacemaking one, according to Anton Ignatenko, President of the Institute of Religion and Policy in Moscow.
Earlier, the press service of the Kazakh leader reported that the Pope would make a state visit to Kazakhstan on September 13-15, 2022. Vatican confirmed the fact of the apostolic trip. Earlier, during a conversation with leaders of Jesuit media in Europe, Pope Francis expressed hope that he would be able to meet with Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia in Kazakhstan this September .
“I can assume with hope that the trip of His Holiness Patriarch Kirill to Kazakhstan for the Congress of leaders of world and traditional religions will take place… I am optimistic, a possible meeting of the Pope and the Patriarch in Kazakhstan is desirable for the two spiritual leaders in order to talk and think about what ways to peace they could find”, Ignatenko told RIA Novosti.
He noted that in previous decades, relations between Russia (formerly USSR) and the West were going through very difficult periods, “and during those periods religious organizations acted as a channel for peacekeeping efforts“.
“I do believe that something similar is happening now. Spiritual leaders of different faiths are praying for peace in their temples and establishing certain peacemaking contacts”, Ignatenko expressed his hope.
Kazakhstan has held six Congresses of leaders of world and traditional religions, they were held in the capital of the country in 2003, 2006, 2009, 2012, 2015 and 2018. They were attended by leaders and prominent representatives of the clergy from Islam, Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism, Shintoism, Taoism and other traditional religions. The seventh Congress was previously scheduled for June 15-16, 2021, but was postponed to a later date due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Photo: Russian Jewish Congress (RJC)