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Young people encouraged to share their thoughts on inter–faith dialogue

Essay competition from the World Council of Churches

Photo credit: WCC/Marcelo Schneider
Photo credit: WCC/Marcelo Schneider

The World Council of Churches (WCC) has announced an essay competition for youth who want to reflect on the theme ‘The Future of Interreligious Dialogue’. The contest marks the 50th anniversary of the WCC’s Office of Interreligious Dialogue and Cooperation, and the Interfaith Working Group of the Commission for Christian Unity and Dialogue is encouraging young people from the Church of Ireland to consider taking part.

The contest aims to encourage people under the age of 30 with interests in the field of interreligious relations and engagement to develop and share their ideas on different subjects such as: Christian theologies of interreligious engagement; some aspect of another religious tradition which is relevant to its relationship to Christianity; religious pluralism more widely; or the theory or practice of interreligious dialogue. Essays may also reflect on interreligious cooperation for the sake of the common good; or the World Council of Churches and interreligious relations.

The five best essays, chosen by a panel of judges comprising of WCC programme executives and faculty from the Ecumenical Institute at Bossey, will be published in the 2021 issue of Current Dialogue, the WCC’s journal for interreligious encounter. Further, the prizewinning authors will have the opportunity to present their work in a conference on ‘The Future of Interreligious Dialogue’ (either physically or virtually) that is being planned for 2021. At this stage, it is likely that participation in this conference will be virtual.

“We hope that this essay competition will attract participation that will be wide in terms of its diversity, and deep in terms of its content,” said Rev Dr Peniel Rajkumar, WCC programme coordinator for Interreligious Dialogue and Cooperation. “It is envisaged to be an exchange of opportunities. While young people will have the opportunity to share their gifts of vision and discernment with the worldwide ecumenical movement, the ecumenical movement will have the opportunity to be inspired and challenged by the hopes, fears and aspirations of our young people.”

All entries, should be 3,500–5,000 words in length (including notes), and be written in English, following the WCC style guide which is available upon request at Media@wcc-coe.org

Contributions must be the original work of the participants and should not have been published elsewhere.

The deadline for the competition is Monday, 15th March 2021.

Rules for the essay competition are available at this link

Shared on behalf of the Interfaith Working Group of the Commission on Christian Unity and Dialogue


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