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Thousands Celebrate Africa Spiritual Day at African Union

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia – Thousands of people from across Africa and beyond took part, onsite and online, in a special Africa Spiritual Day celebration on May 22, 2024. The event was organized by the Interreligious Association for Peace and Development (IAPD) Africa in partnership with the Citizens and Diaspora Directorate (CIDO) of the African Union.

Father Louison Emerick Mbila, chaplain to the African Union, and Pastor Adane Dechassa, executive director of the Interreligious Council of Ethiopia, served as co-hosts during the program, which was held in the Medium Hall of the African Union Headquarters in Addis Ababa.

The program included sincere prayers and invocations by various spiritual leaders, including prayers for peace in the Middle East by Jewish and Muslim leaders. There were also speeches by AU and IAPD representatives and religious leaders of different faiths, and an uplifting musical performance by an Ethiopian church choir.

The morning celebration was followed by a buffet lunch, and an afternoon session with reports on IAPD activities in Zambia and Cote d’Ivoire.

About 500 participants attended the gathering, with hundreds more joining on Zoom; the event was also live-streamed on YouTube and Facebook in English and French. Some 21,000 viewers watched the program, including about 3,000 who gathered at the various branches of the Revelation Spiritual Home of Imboni uZwi-Lezwe Radebe, chairman of IAPD. The event was also broadcasted by Addis Walta TV, which has over 10 million viewers.

Africa Spiritual Day was initiated by IAPD-Africa to celebrate the rich spiritual and cultural heritage of Africa, fostering unity, peace, and solidarity among African people. It is an opportunity for leaders, dignitaries, scholars and spiritual figures to come together to reflect on the spiritual values that bind them, and promote dialogue, peace and cooperation for a better future.

This was the 5th such celebration, but the first to be co-sponsored with the African Union.


By Dr. Paterne Zinsou, Secretary General, UPF Africa May 22, 2024


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