Kolkata, 13 November 2019 — On a stop over in Kolkata on the last leg of his first visit to Darjeeling, Guwahati and Shillong, Cardinal Charles Maung Bo of Yangon Myanmar was ecstatic about the inter-faith unity, harmony and brotherhood he witnessed among religious leaders who met him in Kolkata, 13 November 2019.
“I am deeply touched by the religious brotherhood and respect shown by the minority delegation of Muslim and Buddhist leaders who spent fellowship time,” said the cardinal who is known for his leadership among the Religions for Peace movement.
Among the delegation that met the 72-year old cardinal were: Member of Ministry of Minority Affairs and Madrasa Education, Government of West Bengal Dr Arunjyoti Bihikkhu; Imam-e-Juma of Kashipur Kolkata and Member of West Bengal Waqf Board Moulana Syed Meher Abbas Rizvi; Buddhist Monk Bodhimay Bhikku; Social activist Md Ehteshamul Haque; another social activist Sk. Raja, and others.
Among six minority communities in West Bengal are Muslims, Christians, Buddhists, Sikh, Jain and Parsi groups.
Commenting on the role religions could play in today’s situations of religious strife, intolerance and persecution in different parts of the world, the cardinal said “Diversity should not be seen as a threat, but are to be celebrated… it is unity in diversity that enriches humanity, otherwise we will never have peace in the world.”
The cardinal while praising the inter-religious harmony witnessed in Kolkata visit, encouraged religious leaders to come together and work for peace and development, and social and religious harmony.
Concluding the meeting, the cardinal embraced each one of the members who came to meet him, and encouraged them to work for peace, harmony and brotherhood.
Besides being archbishop of Yangon, Salesian Cardinal Charles Bo is also the President of the “Federation of Asian Bishop’s Conferences” (FABC) consisting of 26 countries, Member of the “Pontifical Council for Culture and Consecrated Life (Rome), and Member of the “Pontifical Commission for Communication (Rome). END