UK: National Interfaith Week
By David and Patricia Earle, UPF UK
On November 20, 2017 for an audience of just over 50 people, mainly from Christian and Muslim backgrounds, gathered to watch a remarkable documentary film about reconciliation and the power of forgiveness, entitled The Imam and the Pastor. The film is one of a number of excellent productions by Initiatives of Change, formerly Moral Rearmament. It depicts the tremendous courage of two religious leaders in Nigeria, former enemies, to gradually overcome their suspicions and establish trust between them, build friendship over a period of 2 or 3 years, and then work together for peace and reconciliation in environments where there is often tension and hostility.
Following the film, we invited comments from the floor, and then heard an extremely moving and remarkable personal testimony of one lady who managed to forgive her mother later on in life, after many years of terrible, unspeakable abuse, particularly as a child.
We invited two women, one Muslim and one Christian, to read extracts from the Qur’an and the Bible relating to forgiveness, and concluded with the beautiful song ‘Make Me A Channel Of Your Peace’ which originates from words of Saint Francis of Assisi …”it is in pardoning that we are pardoned”, again sung by Christian and Muslim women.
We then shared refreshments, stories and friendship in a happy, relaxed atmosphere, before making our journeys home following a moving and enlightening evening together.