The “Human Fraternity Initiative” in Tripoli, North Lebanon, started on January 28, with an awareness session on interreligious dialogue aimed at high school students and teachers, undergraduates, and youth associations. The event took place at the Mar Elias School in the district of Al-Zahria and brought together as speakers religious and lay leaders, young activists and professionals, from Tripoli’s Sunni, Alawite, and Christian communities. The source of inspiration for the meeting was the “Human Fraternity Document on World Peace and Living Together” signed by Pope Francis and the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar, Sh. Ahmed Al-Tayyeb. The awareness session was followed by the distribution of necessities and other aid (food, medicines, school material) by the “Human Fraternity Ambassadors”, an interreligious network of practitioners active in the social field in Tripoli and North Lebanon.
These activities paved the way for the celebration on February 4 of the “International Day of Human Fraternity” proclaimed by the UN General Assembly, as the closing event of the “Human Fraternity Initiative”. On February 4, a working group of 40 religious leaders will gather in a meeting to discuss the “Statement for Human Fraternity in Tripoli and North Lebanon”, which will be officially launched during the celebration of the “4th International Day of Human Fraternity”. During the celebration, the Lebanese Philharmonic Orchestra and the Choir of the Notre Dame University-Louaize will perform the opera “Francesco e il Sultano”, promoted by the Custody of the Holy Land. Moreover, the St. Francis Convent and the Pro Terra Sancta Association will confer the “Human Fraternity Award” to organizations and figures who are deserving for their engagement in the promotion of interreligious dialogue in Tripoli and North Lebanon.
The Religion & Security Council (RSC) is co-organizing the “Human Fraternity Initiative” together with the St. Francis Convent (El Mina-Tripoli, Custody of the Holy Land), Pro Terra Sancta Association, Adyan Foundation, Dialogue for Life and Reconciliation (DLR), DLR Sustainable Network for Religious Leaders in Tripoli and the North, De Gasperi Foundation. Partner institutions and entities include: Tripoli Municipality, El Mina Municipality, Italy’s Embassy to Lebanon, Dante Alighieri Society Lebanon, Notre Dame University-Louaize, Mar Elias School of Carmelite Fathers, Middle East Institute for Research and Strategic Studies, Mousawat Association, For Lebanese Youth, Alawite Islamic Charity Association, Maison d’Entraide et de Développement Social. The “Human Fraternity Initiative” has been officially endorsed by religious authorities in Tripoli and by Italy’s Embassy to Lebanon.