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Vatican Bishop Lays Out Roadmap for Dialogue with Muslims Peace, Justice, Education

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There is a roadmap for dialogue with Muslims, and its three landmarks are peace, justice and education, says a leading Catholic bishop. Bishop Miguel Ayuso Guixot, secretary of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, explained that “on a theological level, differences still remain, and they are known. Beyond any theological difference, however, we take each other’s hand, to build together the common good.” There is a “diverse and rich dialogue with many Muslim institutions,” the bishop said. Bishop Ayuso gave special mention to the restoration of relations between the Vatican and the Al-Azhar mosque in Cairo. Bishop Ayuso made a first visit to Al-Azhar in February and met with the Mosque’s deputy imam, Abbas Shuman. Then, the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar came to visit Pope Francis in the Vatican. Bishop Ayuso made follow-up visits to Al-Azhar in July and October. The aim of these frequent visits is to prepare a meeting in Rome to mark the official restoration of dialogue between the Vatican and Al-Azhar. This meeting may take place in April 2017. “Members of every religion,” Bishop Ayuso underscored, “must all feel citizenship in their country, so that they can take part in building the common good and the social good.”