Norwegian Christians pilgrimage for respect and understanding

By agency reporter
May 25, 2016

From 24 May to 21 June, the Christian Council of Norway (CCN) is promoting a pilgrimage from the Norwegian capital Oslo to Trondheim, an important Christian pilgrimage site and the location of the World Council of Churches (WCC) Central Committee meeting from 22-28 June.

CCN’s General Secretary, the Rev Knut Refsdal. will walk the entire 29-day, 638.6-kilometre route, and is inviting local church leaders and congregations to join part or all of the pilgrimage. Several meetings and dialogue spaces are being organised at stops along the way.

“The main message we want to share along the way is that religious and philosophical leaders of each community can help promote mutual understanding and respect for shared values and therefore deplore violent extremism and hate speech”, said Refsdal.

Special programs are planned for Eidsvoll (27 May), Hamar (30 May), Lillehammer (2 June), Oppdal (14 June), Skaun (19 June), and Trondheim (21 June).

In Eidsvoll, pilgrims will take part in a panel on 'The refugee crisis as a challenge to religion and belief'.

In Hamar, they will take part of a dialogue at the local diocese office on 'Religious extremism'.

At the Lillehammer Church Centre, there will be a discussion about the challenges of the refugee crisis in Europe.

At the Oppdal Christian Centre, pilgrims will join a dialogue about 'Religion and philosophy as positive contributors in the community - with particular reference to the refugee situation in general and the relationship with Muslims in particular'.

At the Skaun Church, there will be an ecumenical evening devotional.

Participants of the WCC Central Committee will be invited join the last seven kilometres of the journey into Trondheim, where, at the Methodist Church, there will be a panel on 'Faith and religious dialogue in Trondheim'.

* The World Council of Churches promotes Christian unity in faith, witness and service for a just and peaceful world. An ecumenical fellowship of churches founded in 1948, by the end of 2012 the WCC had 345 member churches representing more than 500 million Christians from Protestant, Orthodox, Anglican and other traditions in over 110 countries. The WCC works cooperatively with the Roman Catholic Church.

* World Council of Churches http://www.oikoumene.org/en

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