The World Faith Blog

World Faith: The Interfaith Service Network

Religion, Peace and Gender 20 October , 2010

Filed under: Interfaith Issues — Administrator @ 12:36 pm
Tags: , ,

As the number of interfaith and faith-based peace initiatives grows, women peace activists from twenty one countries met in Nicosia to discuss how to use faith to build peace.

Religion has a bad reputation in relation to war and peace, but the Nicosia  gathering entitled Interfaith Peace Building consultation: the need for a gender perspective called by the Women Peacemakers Program of the International Fellowship of Reconciliation, was designed to allow participants to focus not only on the negative side of religion but on the positive potential of faith-based peacebuilding.  The invitation to the consultation cited historical examples of the role religion has played in promoting peace and human rights, from the Civil Rights Movement in the USA and the role of the Catholic Church in the People Power movement in the Philippines, to the interfaith cooperation of Imams and Christian ministers in Nigeria and joint reconstruction efforts by faith-based NGOs in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Yet it is clear that religious bodies tend to be hierarchical in structure and sexist in doctrine and practice, which places obstacles in the way of women’s full participation in faith-based peacebuilding and makes gender analysis essential.   

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