Archive for the ‘Religion’ Category

Institutionalizing Peace: Designing Collective Action To Bring Peace As A Culture And Norm

CaribPR Wire, NEW YORK, NY, Thurs. June 2, 2022: In an effort to tackle the current threats to life and stability from wars and conflicts, Heavenly Culture, World Peace, Restoration of Light (HWPL) held its 9th Annual Commemoration of the Declaration of World Peace online on May 25th, 2022. This year’s commemoration themed “Institutionalizing Peace: Realizing the Collective Will for Peace” was attended by 3000 representatives from politics, religion, academia, media, and civil society. The purpose of this theme was to share the progress made towards sustainable peace through international cooperation and legal instruments.

The host organization, HWPL, proclaimed the Declaration of World Peace back in 2013. This declaration addressed the endorsement of national leaders, the engagement of women and youth, the importance of cooperation among civil societies, and the expansion of media coverage on peace. Later, this declaration was developed into the Declaration of Peace and Cessation of War (DPCW) which includes a process to establish the international legal instruments for global peace.

The 10 articles and 38 clauses of the DPCW include language on the prevention and resolution of conflicts, the gradual reduction of war potential, remaking weapons into daily tools, resolving conflicts respectfully based on religion and ethnic identity, and spreading a culture of peace. The DPCW is written to engage with nations, NGOs, and individual citizens in an effort to urge them to take action for a peaceful world.

In regard to collaborative peacebuilding, Chairman Man Hee Lee of HWPL appealed to event attendees to be united as “messengers of peace” “to bring freedom and peace to future generations.” Chairman Lee further stated, “This time (Russia) invaded Ukraine and started the war. This is why HWPL and families of peace have long called for the establishment of international law to prevent war potentials. So, we gathered experts in international law globally … and made the declaration with 10 articles and 38 clauses.”

Another focus of this event was peace activities in education. An innovative example of teaching methodology and peace was the use of Metaverse. Metaverse was demonstrated as a virtual world platform where students are able to experience peace by reading materials and observing peace activities carried out across the world.

Mr. Supalak Ganjanakhundee, Thammasat University’s Pridi Banomyong International College Visiting Fellow and former Chief Editor of The Nation in Thailand shared that the foundation of peace is closely related to democracy as both “allow the participation of civil society” in the peace process. When explaining the stalled peace process in Southern Thailand he said, “Any peace process that would lead to lasting peace must address the problem at its root cause, and must be conducted democratically with the intensive participation of not only stakeholders, but also civil society.”

HWPL has been developing global cooperation for peace both at the national and international level by garnering the support for the DPCW and working collaboratively with many organizations to reinforce international norms for peace. Hand in hand, HWPL and civil society have been carrying out activities for the public good to ensure that peace takes root worldwide.

Editor’s Note: An image for use with this story is available HERE

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“We Are One In God,”Says Chairman Lee Man-Hee Of Shincheonji Church

Pastors who established MOUs with Shincheonji Church from countries across the world were invited to a press conference on April 2nd

We can learn the revealed word because God dwells in Shincheonji Church,” says the pastors.

CaribPR Wire, WASHINGTON, D.C., Mon. April 4, 2022:

Shincheonji Church of Jesus, the Temple of the Tabernacle of the Testimony (Shincheonji Church of Jesus, under the leadership of Chairman Lee Man-hee), recently hosted a press conference with pastors who had established MOUs with Shincheonji from countries across the world at 5:00PM (KST), on April 2nd. It was well attended by 1,500 pastors from all over the world, along with reporters and journalists via Zoom.

Shincheonji Church of Jesus hosted this event to share the progress made by the online seminars that began last year, the MOUs established thus far, and some case examples. Kim Shin-chang, the Head of the Department of International Missions shared, “Many participants from Africa that were in the Bible Seminar from August of last year reached out to establish MOUs with us. This led to the first MOU with the Worship in the Presence of God Church in Uganda in September” as he was explaining how Shincheonji first started to establish MOUs with other churches.

Some other case examples and testimonials from pastors who established MOUs with Shincheonji were shared during the press conference.

Dongsu Kim, the head pastor of Peace Church confessed, “In the past all I preached was that everyone must believe in Jesus and by sharing grace in this way would lead to salvation. Without fulfillment, I thought heaven was somewhere one went to after death. I thought there was resurrection after death,” expressing his incorrect beliefs about salvation.

Pastor Kim is presently teaching Shincheonji’s Revealed Word to his own congregation. He also stated, “The time has come for all the pastors to come and learn so that they may live a life of faith in the correct truth. I want to share Shincheonji’s Revealed Word to my fellow pastors. I want them to learn the Word and realize that their ideas of salvation are incorrect.”

Pastor Willifred Endohu, a pastor who has been leading his church for 11 years in Cote d’Ivoire, introduced himself stating, “I studied theology in a seminary and was trained to be a pastor through prayer meetings and began ministering a church in a very small room. Thankfully enough, 11 years later my congregation has grown to be about 500 members. I am also a lecturer at a seminary institute as well.”

Pastor Wilifred Endohu is currently learning Lesson 16 of the Introductory Level in Shincheonji’s Zion Mission Center. Pastor Wilifred Endohu stated, “My thoughts and knowledge about the Bible have been broken and is changing through the lessons I’ve been learning in Shincheonji. Jesus and the Word that has become flesh has struck a chord in my heart. I also want to preach the Revealed Word after I’m done studying. I want to share this Word to the people in my congregation that have been following me for the last 8 years,” as he shared his aspirations upon completing the courses in Shincheonji.

He also added, “I want to express how thankful I am for the Chairman because that’s how I could receive the Revealed Word from God. He could not have taught such a profound Word if he had not met God and Jesus. I want to tell my fellow pastors that what I have seen and verified is that all the answers are in the Bible and Shincheonji is testifying those answers according to the Bible. Please come and check for yourselves.”

Chairman Lee spoke about how he has come to share the Word and the role of pastors today.

“Revelation is about re-creation. If you look at Revelation 21, the first heaven and the first earth pass away and a new heaven and a new earth are created. It is about creating people and all creation again,” Chairman Lee stated, explaining that those who are born of God’s seed are harvested and sealed to create God’s new kingdom and new people at the time of Revelation.

He also added, “Writing the word of all the chapters of Revelation in people’s hearts is harvesting, sealing, and nurturing those who have been born of God’s seed and making them into the citizens of God’s kingdom. [This is why] Jesus showed me the events of all the chapters of Revelation and commanded me to testify to all the churches,” as he explained the role of the promised pastor today.

In his concluding remarks, Chairman Lee stated, “We must become freedom fighters of God’s kingdom that restore what God lost. Let’s fight and overcome the devil with the blood of Jesus and the word of testimony and create the people of God’s kingdom so that God may finally come and reign over the world after 6000 years. This is what [God] has made known to us through the Bible. I hope that everyone engraves the words of all the chapters of Revelation—which is the law of heaven—in their hearts. There is only one God, one Bible and one hope. We, as those who believe in God, are also one. We are one!”

Some case examples of what happens after establishing MOUs were also shared. A church named The Early Church of the New Era in the USA invited an instructor from Shincheonji to teach their congregation, and now approximately 100 members of the church are learning the teachings of Shincheonji Church of Jesus. A pastor in the Philippines is teaching his congregation after completing the Bible courses from Shincheonji Church of Jesus. A seminary school in Pakistan has opened up courses on the Revealed Word in their institution after its dean established an MOU with Shincheonji.

According to Shincheonji Church of Jesus, 2155 pastors, 22 seminary schools, and 958 churches in 67 countries have established MOUs with Shincheonji Church of Jesus. Through mutual agreement, Shincheonji Church of Jesus is providing theology materials and instructors for the churches and seminary schools that have made MOUs with them to educate people on the Bible.

This event is available for viewing on Shincheonji’s official YouTube Channel (https://bit.ly/SCJyoutube).

Shincheonji Church of Jesus has been teaching Revelation and the secrets of the kingdom of heaven through online seminars since October of 2021. The 12 tribe leaders followed suit in Chairman Manhee Lee’s first lecture on Revelation and they are all available in 24 different languages on YouTube, with over 1.5 million views to date.

Shincheonji Church of Jesus has been broadcasting the Intermediate Level lessons on YouTube from the 31st of March, and it is set to end on the 27th of June. These lessons are shared at 10AM every Monday and Thursday on their official YouTube channel.

EDITOR’S NOTE: A photo of  Chairman Lee Man-Hee Of the Shincheonji Church is available for use with this story HERE

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President of Ghana Joins T.D. Jakes’ International Leadership Summit

President Nana Akufo-Addo to Speak at Conference featuring Joel Osteen, Janice Bryant Howroyd, Van Jones and Others

CHARLOTTE, N.C., Feb. 14, 2022 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — The president of one of Africa’s wealthiest and most stable countries is bringing his international leadership and expertise to the International Leadership Summit. The annual conference, founded by T.D. Jakes, brings together aspiring and tenured entrepreneurs, leaders and influential change agents to revolutionize the future of leadership. At this year’s event, set to take place in Charlotte from March 31 to April 2, Ghanaian President Nana Akufo-Addo will participate in a “master class” conversation with Jakes, during which the two will discuss creating economic opportunities, technology and the future of both nations.

T.D. Jakes hosts the International Leadership Summit March 31 to April 2.

Widely regarded as a model of democracy, Ghana is one of the wealthiest and most progressive of Africa’s 54 countries. The West African nation is the continent’s largest producer of gold and the world’s second largest producer of cocoa. Akufo-Addo was first elected in January 2017, and reelected in 2020 for a second and final term. Since becoming president, Akufo-Addo has worked to build strong economic and cultural ties between his country and Africans in the diaspora, particularly African Americans. Last year, Twitter announced it would be moving its African corporate headquarters to Ghana. Akufo-Addo is a lawyer and a champion of human rights, justice and democracy. He has worked on constitutional cases to help protect the independence of the judiciary, the rights of citizens to demonstrate without police permits, and for equal access to state-owned media for all political parties.

Jakes has spent the last 45 years serving and inspiring people on a global scale. In addition to his role as Bishop of The Potter’s House, Jakes is a philanthropist, an educator, a real estate developer and a respected leader in the international business community. The annual International Leadership Summit will provide visionaries and leaders with the tools they need to become “master builders” who can construct a solid foundation and revolutionize the way they lead in an ever-changing world.

Other speakers at this year’s summit will include business tycoon Janice Bryant Howroyd, author and political commentator Van Jones, pastor Joel Osteen and other key figures in business, entertainment, nonprofit and faith arenas. Registration for the conference is open at ThisIsILS.org.

Media registration is now open. Media may request credentials for the International Leadership Summit by filling out this form .

“We are ecstatic President Akufo-Addo will be an integral part of our leadership summit,” said Jakes. “Ghana has nurtured a special relationship with African Americans dating back to its independence from Great Britain in 1957. President Akufo-Addo’s leadership has only strengthened that bond. As President, he has transformed Ghana into a tourist and relocation destination for Black Americans by creating easier paths to citizenship for them. I know our master class with him will enlighten, illuminate and transform many.”

Media Credentials:
All members of the media—reporters, photographers, videographers and crew—are required to have and display credentials in order to cover events within the conference. Press may request media credentials for the International Leadership Summit by filling out this form. Applicants will be notified via email whether they are approved or declined for credentials. Information regarding where to pick up credentials, parking, facility access, interviews and other details will be sent once credentials have been approved.

About The Potter’s House
Located in Dallas, The Potter’s House is a 30,000-member nondenominational, multicultural church and humanitarian organization led by Bishop T. D. Jakes, twice featured on the cover of Time magazine as America’s Best Preacher and as one of the nation’s 25 Most Influential Evangelicals. The Potter’s House has four locations: The Potter’s House of Dallas, The Potter’s House of Fort Worth, The Potter’s House of North Dallas and The Potter’s House OneLA.

NANA ADD DANKWA AKUFO-ADDO IS THE PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC AND COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF OF THE GHANA ARMED FORCES. HE WILL APPEAR AT THE INTERNATIONAL LEADERSHIP SUMMIT.

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Annual Event To Commemorate Civilian-Led Peacebuilding In Mindanao Calls Forth Collective Action To Develop Peace

CaribPR Wire, WASHINGTON D.C., Fri. Jan. 28, 2022: On January 24, 2022, over 22,000 people from 51 countries attended a virtual Peace Conference in honor of the annual Heavenly Culture, World Peace, Restoration of Light (HWPL) Peace Day celebration. The event commemorated a civilian-led peace agreement made between the Islamic and Catholic communities in Mindanao, Philippines 8 years ago.

This year’s gathering was titled the “Law of Peace in Heaven and on Earth” and aimed to: (1) promote interfaith harmony between religions and, (2) raise public support to establish an international law for peace.

Back in 2014 HWPL, an international NGO, mediated the conflict in Mindanao by proposing a peace agreement by local representatives. Witnessed by Chairman Man Hee Lee of HWPL, the peace agreement was signed by local leadership: Hon. Esmael G. Mangudadatu, the then Governor of Maguindanao, and Archbishop-Emeritus Fernando Capalla of the Archdiocese of Davao. Since then, the province of Maguindanao and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front has declared January 24th as “HWPL Peace Day.”  In addition, leaders have built Peace Monuments throughout the Philippines to honor the peace agreement, with the newest monument planned to be unveiled in February.

Monday’s event reaffirmed the region’s and HWPL’s continued dedication to international cooperation and the importance of local partnerships when building peace in Mindanao.  Key figures from the Philippines gave congratulatory messages including Senate President Vicente Sotto III, Senator Panfilo Lacson, Senator Cynthia Villar, Senator Ronald ‘Bato’ Dela Rosa, Chief Justice Alexander Gesmundo, and TV News Anchor Mariz Umali. Keynote speakers from various fields also presented commitment messages declaring their plans to promote peace in their respective sectors including law, education, youth, women, private business and media.

For instance, Prabhu Mahendra Das, Temple President of Sri Sri Radha Madhava Mandir, said that he decided to participate in the World Alliance of Religions’ Peace Office organized by HWPL because it is “a global platform for religious leaders to talk, share, discuss, learn, and grow together harmoniously and peacefully.” For the contribution to peace in the field of religion, he added, “I firmly believe that all religions should enter into a partnership [with HWPL] through the form of a Memorandum of Understanding.”

Justice Raoul Victorino (ret), Chairman of Philippine National Prayer Breakfast and Dean of the College of Law of Philippine Christian University, shared how he was inspired by the “revolutionary movement” that HWPL initiated to endorse global peacebuilding by drafting the “Declaration of Peace and Cessation of War (DPCW). ” The DPCW was written by global experts in international law to advocate peace as a global culture and norm. He declared, “I will strive to get the support of the President of the Philippines for the DPCW. At the same time, I will integrate the DPCW [education] in the college of law by collaborating with the Philippine Association of Law Schools.”

Also, representing the Philippines education sector, Commissioner Ronald Adamat of the Commissioner on Higher Education (CHED), shared, “The CHED Commission en Banc has issued an endorsement to President Duterte, urging him to declare January 24th as ‘National Peace Day’, that will provide for simultaneous celebration and observance of peace through peace activities, events, and ceremonies by all instrumentalities and agencies of government, including the private sector. This shall also be celebrated and observed in the education sector.”

Chairman Lee, during the closing remarks, said: “Our purpose is to bring all people in the world together to create a world of peace and leave it as a lasting legacy for future generations. To make this world a peaceful place without wars, let us become messengers of peace. Let us remind people around the world of that emotion – a longing for peace – and the Peace Day so they can remember all of this forever.”

EDITOR’S NOTE: See images for use with this press release HERE and HERE

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Shincheonji Church Holds US Press Conference To Make Known New Seminar Series

CaribPR, WASHINGTON, D.C., Fri. Jan. 14, 2022: At 7 p.m. on January 14th, reporters from the USA, the Caribbean, and several South American countries attended a press conference held by Shincheonji Church to ask questions about a new seminar series regarding the fulfilled realities of biblical parables.

“Shincheonji Online Seminar: Testimony on the Parables of the Secrets of Heaven and Their True Meanings” is the newest seminar series held by Shincheonji Church of Jesus, the Temple of the Tabernacle of the Testimony. This round of seminars focuses on understanding parables written in the New Testament Bible and will be launched on a YouTube live-stream every Monday and Thursday at 10am (GMT+9) from January 3rd to March 28th, 2022.

Shincheonji’s prior seminar series entitled: ‘God’s New Covenant Revelation Prophecy and Fulfillment,’ has already drawn millions of views via YouTube since it began in October 2021. Thanks to this series success, thus far, approximately 700 churches worldwide have reportedly requested further doctrinal exchanges with Shincheonji as they seek deeper content.

In a recent report in December 2021 from Pew Research Center’s National Public Opinion Reference Surveys, 3 out of 10 adults in the United States are now religiously unaffiliated. Protestant denominations are the most affected by a decrease in congregants, with a steady decrease from 52% in 2007 to 40% in 2021. https://www.pewforum.org/2021/12/14/about-three-in-ten-u-s-adults-are-now-religiously-unaffiliated/

This trend is also reflected by another investigation from Lifeway Research in Nashville that says most Americans consider Jesus as a historical fact but have no biblical knowledge about why he came. According to the report, only 9% knew that Jesus’ mission was to give open words (fulfillment) of the Old Testament. https://blog.lifeway.com/newsroom/2021/12/08/christmas-celebrates-a-historical-event-americans-say/

On the other side of the globe, an increasing number of people are affiliated with religion. Contrary to the decrease in traditional denominations, since 2019 over 140,000 people have joined Shincheonji Church of Jesus after receiving Shincheonji Biblical education courses.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Please see associated image for use with this press release HERE

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Shincheonji Church Of Jesus, 20,000-Members Increase Virtually, The Secret Is The Word (Doctrine)

CaribPR Wire, WASHINGTON, D.C., Thurs. Dec. 30, 2021: Shincheonji Zion Christian Mission Center’s online graduation ceremony held on December 26th, 2021, had over 18,000 graduates.

More than 37,000 church members have enrolled since the Coronavirus crisis began… “This growth is possible only with the Word.”

After the lecture on the Book of Revelation, Pastors sign MOU: “Introductory course of Zion Christian Mission Center will be lectured on YouTube”

On December 26th 2021, Shincheonji Church of Jesus, The Temple of the Tabernacle of the Testimony, (specifically, Chairman Man-hee Lee, on behalf of Shincheonji Church of Jesus), held an online graduation ceremony for Zion Christian Mission Center Class 112, which produced nearly 20,000 new members.

A total of 18,838 people (11,162 domestic and 7,676 overseas) graduated during an online graduation ceremony, which was broadcast worldwide through the official YouTube channel of the Shincheonji Church of Jesus at noon on December 26th. Zion Christian Mission Center is a Bible education center operated by Shincheonji Church of Jesus.

During the sermon at the graduation ceremony, Chairman Lee testified to the words of today’s fulfillment of Revelation and emphasized how the creation of a new kingdom and new people is prophesied in the Bible and the graduates are part of it’s reality.

Chairman Lee stated that Jesus fulfilled the promise of sowing the two kinds of seeds as written in Jer 31 at the First Coming, and at the end of the world – the time of harvest – the good seed of the two kinds of seeds, the sons of God, will be harvested, sealed, and created into the 144,000 of the 12 tribes.

Chairman Lee continued, “The 12 tribes of Shincheonji are teaching the book of Revelation in 5W’s and 1H all around the world.”

On the day of the graduation, Tan Young-jin, the supervisor of the Zion Christian Center, said, “Shincheonji is not stopping its growth, and as time goes by, online evangelism is getting better. All members of the church are evangelizing online as they are thoroughly complying with the quarantine policy.”

He continued, “As a result of the Chairman and the 12 tribe leaders testifying to the prophecy and reality of the book of Revelation all over the world, many churches and seminaries have signed an MOU with Shincheonji Church of Jesus and are requesting lectures. This mission center’s introductory course will be testified worldwide. Please listen for yourself and see what God has promised for today.”

On the other hand, the number of graduates at the graduation ceremony is drawing attention both inside and outside relevant religious circles. The growth of Shincheonji Church of Jesus contrasts with the general atmosphere of other churches, where membership is decreasing during the COVID-19 pandemic. Shincheonji Church of Jesus has seen unprecedented growth throughout the world, especially considering that it was achieved solely through online education.

The Zion Christian Mission Center produced 18,382 graduates last year. Since the cessation of face-to-face religious activities due to COVID-19 occurred, 37,220 people have completed the Bible education course online and officially joined Shincheonji Church of Jesus.

The reason why the number of members of Shincheonji Church of Jesus are increasing after the outbreak of COVID-19 is interpreted as a result of desiring a life of faith centered on the words of the Bible. It is reasoned that there are many people who started studying out of interest after encountering the high-level Bible education provided by Shincheonji Church of Jesus, especially as an environment was created where people could access various lectures through YouTube and other online resources instead of face-to-face religious activities due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Bible Seminar On “What Jesus Told Is Achieved In Today’s World”

CaribPR Wire, WASHINGTON, D.C., Dec. 30, 2021: Amid a global decline in the religious population, a clear explanation of the Bible has drawn more than 140,000 believers to the church and the attention of millions.

“Shincheonji Online Seminar: Testimony on the Parables of the Secrets of Heaven and Their True Meanings” is held by Shincheonji Church of Jesus, the Temple of the Tabernacle of the Testimony. This round of seminars focusing on understanding parables written in the Bible in the New Testament will be on Youtube live-stream on every Monday and Thursday on 10am (GMT+9) from January 3rd to March 28th.

“Parables are the key element to understanding the secrets of the kingdom of heaven. The prophecy of the Old Testament was fulfilled at the time of Jesus in his first coming. Now Jesus left his prophecy of the New Testament to be fulfilled “when the time comes” (John 16:25). We are heading towards the true meaning as the prophecy is revealed,” said an official of the church.

The previous seminars on the book of Revelation for the last three months on YouTube were released in 24 languages and reached 7 million views in 136 countries including 16,000 pastors as participants. Shincheonji Church of Jesus said that 1,200 global church leaders in 57 countries have signed MOUs with the church to boost international cooperation and exchanges for educational support.

As for the signing, Pastor Jerry Hagerman of Wayside Mission Church in Virginia, USA, said, “I want to be able to grow in the word and I want to teach out congregation … and help bring them from death to life. I want to be one with God’s kingdom and have open communication.”

In a recent report in December 2021 from Pew Research Center’s National Public Opinion Reference Surveys, 3 out of 10 adults in the United States are now religiously unaffiliated. The most affected in the fall in the religious population is the Protestant among Christian denominations that has shown steady decrease from 52% in 2007 to 40% in 2021.

This trend is also reflected by another investigation from Lifeway Research in Nashville that says most Americans consider Jesus as a historical fact but religiously have no biblical knowledge about why he came. According to the report, only 9% of the 1,005 respondents knew that his mission was to give open words (fulfillment) of the Old Testament.

On the other side of the globe, an increasing number of people are affiliated with religion. Contrary to the decrease in traditional denominations, over 140,000 people have joined the Shincheonji Church of Jesus after the Bible education course since 2019 and the subsequent COVID-19.

The official of Shincheonji Church of Jesus said, “Across the world, more and more people are experiencing diseases, disasters, and hardships due to COVID-19, thinking deeply about the meaning of life and suffering. Religion must be able to provide answers to these people. In the religious world where face-to-face activities are limited, education should reach out to every individual in local communities.”

“What the Shincheonji Church appeals to people is the clear explanation of Jesus’ mission in the New Testament,” he continued.

You can watch the seminar by searching “Shincheonji Online Seminar: Testimony on the Parables of the Secrets of Heaven and Their True Meanings” on YouTube or through the link https://www.youtube.com/c/ShincheonjiChurchofJesus

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Religions Unite To Pray For Peace And Care For One Another In The Pandemic Crisis

CaribPR Wire, Washington, D.C., Mon. Dec. 21, 2020: While national measures limiting social activities bring out changes of daily routine due to the pandemic, efforts to spiritually understand about life facing diseases and related social changes are underway across religions globally.

On December 14, 560 representatives from 31 religions in 80 countries, including Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Jainism, Judaism and Sikhism, joined in an online gathering titled: “HWPL End-of-year Religious Leaders’ Gathering: United Hopes & Prayers for a Brighter 2021,” to express words of consolation to humanity and reaffirm inter-religious commitment to and dialogue for peace.

Eleven religious leaders representing different religions prayed for wisdom and solution to the multifarious life patterns affected by the current COVID-19 crisis. The video messages from religious leaders displayed their support for the role of religion in countering anti-peace movements such as discrimination, hatred and violence that can be exacerbated during the pandemic.

During the prayer, Rev. Acharya Prem Shankaranand Tirth, Hindu High Priest of Shree Geeta Ashram of Delhi, said: “For our colleagues, families of peace, let us continue endeavor of world peace. During this pandemic, we must realize the value of one another in that we all coexist with the nature and other creations. We in the human society must act as one and should exist in peace, harmony and love.”

“I remember sitting at my desk and finding out about the first infection in my own country. I prayed, asking a lot of questions. Many of my peers turned back to scripture in these times to seek answers about the Creator God, His plan, His will and what He wants us to focus on due to these events,” said Ms. Nandi Bester, manager of International Youth Peace Group in South Africa.

“Today we may be able to solve the problem of COVID-19, but another disease will come. When winter is coming, we can’t stop it but can cover ourselves and protect ourselves. That’s what we can do when there is challenging issue of bad health and adversities coming in life. We should maintain patience and learn the art of tolerance and tolerate the difficulty and suffering that is coming upon us,” said Rev. Hare Krsna Das, Priest of ISKCON, Rishikesh, India.

“Regarding the question about how human society should understand why suffering such as COVID-19 occurs, we found that all religions are searching for an answer. In the process, those participating in this event, transcending time difference, pray for the safety of all regardless of their faiths. This is the clear difference from the time before the pandemic when news of conflict was filled with intolerance against groups from different backgrounds. In this respect, it has proved the possibility that humanity in a crisis can be united and one in peace beyond religion,” said a HWPL official.

The organizer HWPL is an NGO affiliated with the UN ECOSOC and had led national plasma donation from over 3,700 people in South Korea who recovered from COVID-19 to develop a cure throughout this year.

Key Attendance List

No. Country Religion Name Organization Title
1 India Sikhism Mr. Bhupinder Singh Guru Teg Bahadar Jalandhar Head Priest
2 Ukraine Judaism Alexander Duhovnyi All-Ukrainian Council of Religious Associations Chairman
3 India Jainism Pradyumna Shah Singh Religious Studies, Punjabi University Professor
4 India Buddhism Dhammapiya International Buddhist Confederation (IBC) Secretary General
5 India ISKCON Hare Krsna Das ISKCON Rishikesh Priest
6 Czech Republic Islam Hassen Tlili Alfirdaus Praha Imam
7 Romania The Orthodox Church Constantin Cârlan Ungureanu Biserica “Sfântul Ştefan” Parish Priest
8 Cambodia Buddhism Oeun Sam Art Supreme Patriarch’s Cabinet Personal Assistant to The Great Supreme Patriarch
9 Sweden Ahmadiyya Agha Yahya Khan Ahmadiyya Muslim Community Gothenburg Mosque Chief Imam
10 United States of America Hinduism Bikram Paul The Hindu Temple of Metropolitan Washington Chairman
11 United States of America Protestantism Eldon Jones Good field church Pastor
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Forced Religious Conversion Becomes an International Human Rights Problem

CaribPR Wire, WASHINGTON, D.C., Dec. 20, 2019: On 19 November, the Italian Center
for Studies on New Religions
(CESNUR) and the Belgien Human
Rights Without Frontiers (HRWF)
hosted a seminar on human rights
entitled “Intolerance and
Discrimination Against New
Religious Movements: An
International Problem” in Seoul,
South Korea..
The seminar was devoted to the
protection of the rights of religious
minorities with a special focus on forced conversion cases in Korea. Forced conversion, also
known as “deprogramming”, is a violation of human rights. Proponents of forced conversion
kidnap and detain members of religious groups labeled as “cults” in an effort to compel them to
abandon their faith.
More than 80 participants including legal experts, journalists, and civil society representatives
reviewed the current situation of forced conversion and discussed solutions to defend the
freedom of faith and human rights that have become the norm of the international community.
Massimo Introvigne, Managing Director of CESNUR as well as an Italian sociologist, stressed
how, “Korean deprogrammers are specialized pastors from mainstream churches, most of them
Presbyterian. The protests that commemorate the victims from forced conversion were
mentioned in the 2019 U.S. State Department Report on Religious Freedom. The report cited
examples of how forced conversions violated religious freedom in 2018. However, there were
new cases of deprogramming even after their death,” he criticized.
Regarding the
multi-dimensional strategy
to solve such phenomenon,
Willy Fautré, Founder and
Director of HRWF stated
several suggestions;
pointing at the
responsibility of the
leadership of the
Presbyterian Church which
tolerates, endorses, and maybe encourages such a practice; developing advocacy at the United
Nations and in organizations defending freedom of religion or belief; prosecuting those who
encourage people to perpetrate an act of abduction and confinement.
In an open letter, signed by 15 international NGOs including CAP-LC and HRWF, to the South
Korean President Moon Jae In on July 24 th , it said, “South Korea may well be the last democratic
country in the world where deprogramming is still tolerated” and asked the President to
“investigate in-depth accusations of forcible deprogramming, put a stop to this obnoxious
practice, and hold those responsible fully accountable.”
As an elected member of the United Nations Human Rights Council, South Korea vowed “to
participate in international efforts to respond to human rights crises around the world.” Seminar
participants urged the Korean government to respond to the issue of forced conversion which is
still threatening the human rights of its people.

Center for Studies on New Religions (CESNUR) from Italy and Human Rights Without Frontiers (HRWF) from Belgium hosted the seminar

CaribPR Wire, WASHINGTON, D.C., Dec. 20, 2019: On 19 November, the Italian Center for Studies on New Religions (CESNUR) and the Belgien Human Rights Without Frontiers (HRWF) hosted a seminar on human rights entitled “Intolerance and Discrimination Against New Religious Movements: An International Problem” in Seoul, South Korea.

The seminar was devoted to the protection of the rights of religious minorities with a special focus on forced conversion cases in Korea. Forced conversion, also known as “deprogramming”, is a violation of human rights. Proponents of forced conversion kidnap and detain members of religious groups labeled as “cults” in an effort to compel them to abandon their faith.

More than 80 participants including legal experts, journalists, and civil society representatives reviewed the current situation of forced conversion and discussed solutions to defend the freedom of faith and human rights that have become the norm of the international community.

Massimo Introvigne, Managing Director of CESNUR as well as an Italian sociologist, stressed how, “Korean deprogrammers are specialized pastors from mainstream churches, most of them Presbyterian. The protests that commemorate the victims from forced conversion were mentioned in the 2019 U.S. State Department Report on Religious Freedom. The report cited examples of how forced conversions violated religious freedom in 2018. However, there were new cases of deprogramming even after their death,” he criticized.

Regarding the multi-dimensional strategy to solve such phenomenon, Willy Fautré, Founder and Director of HRWF stated several suggestions; pointing at the responsibility of the leadership of the Presbyterian Church which tolerates, endorses, and maybe encourages such a practice; developing advocacy at the United Nations and in organizations defending freedom of religion or belief; prosecuting those who encourage people to perpetrate an act of abduction and confinement.

In an open letter, signed by 15 international NGOs including CAP-LC and HRWF, to the South Korean President Moon Jae In on July 24 th , it said, “South Korea may well be the last democratic country in the world where deprogramming is still tolerated” and asked the President to “investigate in-depth accusations of forcible deprogramming, put a stop to this obnoxious practice, and hold those responsible fully accountable.”

As an elected member of the United Nations Human Rights Council, South Korea vowed “to participate in international efforts to respond to human rights crises around the world.” Seminar participants urged the Korean government to respond to the issue of forced conversion which is still threatening the human rights of its people.

CONTACT:

Gabby Fonce

+1 202-898-4571

[email protected]

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Back to Kama: Rael supports ‘Right to Return’ for those of African descent

LAS VEGAS, March 6, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Several years ago, Rael, spiritual leader of the International Raelian Movement (IRM), inspired the movement “Back to Kama” (the original name for Africa used by its indigenous people) to encourage well-educated, successful and affluent people of all races and religions – especially descendants of slaves – to migrate to Kama and relocate their businesses and operations there, along with transferring knowledge and wealth accumulated in the West.

“The Back to Kama movement is gaining momentum now,” Rael said in a statement released today by the IRM. “However, interested candidates are facing an obstacle that tempers their enthusiasm.”

Describing the obstacle as one that is “of an administrative nature and easy to overcome,” Rael went on to compare the current situation with the one that existed right when the nation of Israel was first created. He pointed out that the Israeli government immediately established ‘The Right to Return,” whereby any Jew, no matter where he or she lived at the time, could immediately receive an Israeli passport and the right to live in Israel.

“The same Right to Return should be instituted by the West African states from which most ancestors of African-Americans came, as well ancestors of those now living in the Caribbean islands and South America,” Rael explained. “African states cannot afford to slow the return [of those with African ancestry] for administrative reasons. Their return, with their wealth and knowledge, is real manna, and it also renders justice for the [enslaved] ancestors.”

In today’s statement, Rael asked all Raelians in Kama to launch a broad campaign that will pressure that continent’s governments to immediately adopt right-of-return laws for all descendants of American and Caribbean slaves.

“It would be justice if those who have accumulated wealth and knowledge in countries that enslaved their ancestors to leave these countries and benefit the countries that were forcibly deprived of this invaluable human capital,” Rael said. “They should even request that the [formerly] enslaving countries issue huge monetary compensation to help them return to Africa.”

CONTACT: Kasyo Perrier, 617-967-6179, [email protected]

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