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Iran Cultural Advisor, Pakistan Board of Churches emphasize importance of interfaith dialogue

Islamabad, IRNA -- Culture Counselor of the Islamic Republic of Iran in Pakistan met with a Christian delegation of various churches to discuss cultural cooperation, interfaith interaction and increased communication between followers of different religions.

The delegation met with Ehsan Khazaei on the occasion of Christmas and the New Year in Islamabad.

The two sides discussed common ground and cooperation for dialogue between followers of the divine religions, as well as cultural and religious issues.

During the meeting enhanced cooperation between Iran’s cultural consulate, Persian Research Center of Iran and Pakistani Christian centers was emphasized.

The Iranian Cultural Counselor expressed desire to establish religious relations between the Islamic Republic of Iran and Center for Christian Studies in Pakistan.

While congratulating the birth of Jesus Christ and the New Year, the Iranian Cultural Counselor said the Iranian cultural center in Pakistan plays a vital role in enhanced cultural relations between the two countries.

Ehsan Khazaei, while briefing about the Center for the Dialogue of Religions and Cultures of the Islamic Republic of Iran, mentioned the development of the Persian language, scientific and academic cooperation and the rapprochement of Islamic sects as two important and fundamental axes and priorities of cultural consulting activities.

He said the religion is rooted in human nature and will not disappear, so there is a dire need for unity and empathy among religions more than ever.

He went on to emphasize that all the heavenly and divine religions are messengers of peace, friendship and solidarity, adding we learn to respect other religions from the teachings of the Holy Prophet (PBUH).

He spoke about the importance and impact of religion in people's lives during Corona pandemic as how people of the world went to mosques, churches, temples and places of worship to pray and ask God for help, and this was an important event that happened and brought people's hearts closer to God.

The Pakistani Christian delegation from the country's various churches included Christopher Sharaf, a representative of the Center for Christian Studies in Rawalpindi, Asif Masih, and Pasteur Parviz, head of the Union of Churches (UPC).

Asif Masih, Chairman of Global Gospel Fellowship Church Ministries Pakistan said his organization is an international organization which operates in 134 countries and in different cities of Pakistan, including Karachi and Lahore.

He added in addition to performing religious activities the Global Gospel Fellowship Church Ministries often helps the affected people facing problems such as earthquakes, floods, and coronas, regardless of their religion. He said it also runs various educational and vocational training programs for young people.

"We have a long-standing relationship with Iran and there are sacred things in this country that are respected by all," said Christopher Sharaf, deputy coordinator at the Center for Christian Studies.

He said this center was established 53 years ago in 1967, and the purpose of establishing this center is to bring religions closer and to create solidarity between churches.

At the end of the meeting a script of the Holy Quran with English translation and the latest publications of the Iranian Cultural Center were presented to the Christian delegation of Pakistan.

Source: Islamic Republic News Agency - IRNA


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