Over the past year or so I have been involved in a group called the Three Faiths Forum here in Cork. Already established in Dublin and in other cities throughout the world, the Three Faiths Forum is an initiative that brings together representatives of the three Abrahamic faiths – Judaism, Christianity and Islam, seeking to create a space where people of faith can dialogue openly and respectfully, come to a better understanding of each other’s faith and culture and work together to enhance tolerance, co-operation and friendship in our society.
Cork, like all of Ireland, is increasingly a multicultural, multiracial and multi-religious society. Our group is drawn from the Muslim, Jewish and Christian faith communities in Cork and we seek to explore how our various faith traditions can help foster a spirit of openness, dialogue and inclusion here in Cork. Next Saturday, 22nd April, we will hold our first public events when we will gather to celebrate Earth Day together at 1.00 p.m. in Bishop Lucey Park, Grand Parade Cork and our shared calling to care for the earth and to be responsible stewards of creation. In a world marked by division and hostility, where faith is often twisted to justify other interests this is an opportunity to say that we, as people of faith, believe in the value of respect, inclusion, dialogue and co-operation. All are welcome to join us for this simple celebration on Saturday and I hope that you will try to join us if you can. Fr Seán