Peace advocate: Respect, acceptance keys to humane existence

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Sunday, March 23, 2014


RESPECT in other religion and acceptance of differences are keys to a humane existence to achieve solidarity among people, said an Italian peace advocate and a believer of dialogue.

Alberto Quattrucci a deacon of the Catholic Church, in an interview, said that man’s learning without experience and practice could not contribute to humanity and live harmoniously with his environment.

He said that what good is a learned man, full of opinions, ideas, if those ideas are not put to practice to better the lives of the men and women in his community.

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“We do not need heroes, rather, we need people who can share their learning, their energies with the others and bring forth peace and harmony,” Quattrucci said.

Quattrucci, who visited the Archdiocese of Cagayan de Oro, said regardless of religion, people have to dialogue and come to understand and accept their differences and work for the dignity of human life, “that way we can live in peace with one another.”

Quattrucci studied pedagogy at the Faculty of Magistero in Rome and Theology at the Gregoriana Pontifical University. He is a member of the Community Sant’ Egidio, which has been recognized as an International Public Lay Association of the Catholic Church by the Pontifical Council for Laity since 1986.

He received his order as permanent deacon in 1988 and became the secretary general of the International Meetings Peoples and Religions, and association founded by Sant’ Egidio to promote mutual knowledge and dialogue among religions.

The Sant’ Egidio Community was established in Rome in 1968, immediately after the Vatican Council II. It is currently a movement with over 60,000 active supporters in Rome, in Italy and in 73 countries in different continents.

Solidarity toward the underprivileged, disadvantaged and low-income social groups is offered as a voluntary service, free of any charge, and is put into practice through different types of programs in terms of goals and methods.

Quattrucci said that ecumenism and the dialogue between religions are perceived in terms of a search for unity among believers and a pathway toward peace and cooperation between religions, as well as a way of life and a method for reconciliation in conflict.

Sant’ Egidio Community established in 1973 the Comunita di S. Egidio–ACAP to coordinate its social and humanitarian works. Its main purpose is to promote justice, peace, development, international cooperation and the protection of human rights.

“These goals are achieved by ensuring dignity and equality, upholding individual rights, developing all forms of social solidarity between individuals, combating all forms of poverty, promoting cultural, education and social and healthcare initiatives,” said Quattrucci.

The Association is fostering forms of active participation involving the entire population; cooperating with international bodies, public administrations, non-government organizations, private associations and institutions.

The association also organize and promote training and refresher courses; setting up and running shelters and counseling centers, residential social and healthcare facilities, assist living centers and foster homes, in particular for minors, disabled persons, the elderly, the homeless, refugees and immigrants; promoting healthcare education and prevention; by promoting social, cultural, school and work inclusion for immigrants, refugees and nomads, notwithstanding the support for children primarily in countries where they are threatened by poverty, exploitation or conflict through the different forms of child sponsorship or international adoption programs.

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on March 24, 2014.

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