Religious Tolerance Depends on Acknowledging Religion's Private and Public Roles, Says Polish-Born Prelate

June 13, 2006

Source: ZENIT

On June 13, 2006 ZENIT reported, "There can be no religious tolerance if there is not appreciation for both the private and public role of religion, says the Holy See. Archbishop Jozef Wesolowski, head of a Holy See delegation to a conference on tolerance, made that point at the event promoted by the Organization for Security and Cooperation of Europe (OSCE). 'No partnership among cultures, religions and ethnicities can be established in mutual ignorance,' insisted the archbishop, who is also apostolic nuncio to Kazakhstan. The meeting in Almaty, held Monday and today, sought to 'Promote Intercultural, Interreligious and Interethnic Understanding.' 'Creating a partnership requires dialogue,' Archbishop Wesolowski told the gathering. 'However, dialogue is only the first step, which should lead to identifying a common and "solid" ground upon which a lasting partnership can be established.' 'What should make up this common "ground"?' the Polish-born prelate asked the representatives of the 55 states that make up the OSCE. 'It is necessary that this common ground consist of respect and appreciation for different cultures and religions,' he answered. Archbishop Wesolowski, 57, deplored that today 'religions are too often manipulated or even misunderstood as part of the problem, when in fact they are and should be considered part of the solution to problems that exist between different cultures and civilizations.'"