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April 2018
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World Interfaith Harmony Week

World Interfaith Harmony Week Observed in Japan

Tokyo, Japan—UPF-Japan commemorated UN World Interfaith Harmony Week 2018 by holding a forum with approximately 80 Ambassadors for Peace and representatives of Shintoism, Buddhism, Judaism, Islam and Christianity. The event, co-sponsored by UPF-Japan’s Council of Religious Ambassadors for Peace and the Federation of Peace and Unification, a network of Korean residents in Japan, took place on February 1, 2018. Since its establishment in October 2010 by the UN General Assembly, World Interfaith Harmony Week has been observed annually during the first week of February. It was the 93rd forum sponsored by the council.

Mr. Sotoji Maeda, the coordinator of the forum, explained its objective, saying, “In order to promote a culture of peace, diverse religious traditions should honor other faiths, [which will foster] mutual understanding and harmony.”

Ven. Taishu Nara, a Shinto priest and vice president of the council, performed a Shinto ritual. This was followed by prayers offered by representatives of Buddhism, Judaism, Islam and Christianity and the recitation of a prayer of the late founder of UPF, Rev. Sun Myung Moon.

Yong Hak Kim, president of the Federation for Peace and Unity, highlighted the significance of the event: “As we face mounting tension in East Asia, the prayers and teachings of the religious leaders participating in this event are extremely important in order to shift people away from plundering each other but rather toward living for the sake of others.”

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