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UPF-France Seeks Empathy in Scriptures


Paris, France—The 25th Francophone Scriptural Sharing focused on "Cultivating Empathy."


The meeting on May 21, 2023, was the latest in a monthly program organized by Dialogue & Alliance.


Just over 20 people attended the meeting in Paris, with others connecting online from 18 countries: Belgium, Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, France, India, Ivory Coast, Kosovo, Mali, Mauritius, Monaco, Northern Macedonia, Republic of the Congo, Spain, Switzerland, and the United States.

The moderator was Soraya Ayouch, a member of the Dialogue & Alliance Sponsoring Committee.


The first reading was a look at Judaism. It was a text taken from the 4th chapter of Genesis, verses 1 to 16. This passage was commented on by Rabbi Gabriel Hagai, an Orthodox Jew of Sephardic tradition who trained in Jerusalem and Boston (USA).

The second reading brought a Buddhist perspective. It was a quotation from the book Living in Mindfulness by the Vietnamese Buddhist master Thich Nhat Hanh (1926-2022), which was commented on by Venerable Michel Thao Chan, president and founder of the Cercle de Réflexion des Nations.


There was a short cultural break in which the audience listened to the song "Empathy" performed by the poetry slammer, composer and guitarist Kalimat.


The last reading brought a Christian perspective. It was verses 32 to 37 of the 11th chapter of the Gospel of John. The verses were read by Modeste Amoussou, then commented on by the Benedictine Brother Benoît Billot.


The meeting concluded with a question-and-answer session led by Laurent Ladouce, a researcher with the Universal Peace Federation.


The next meeting is scheduled for Sunday, June 18, on the theme of vulnerability.


The recording of this session is available at: https://youtu.be/ByEpNJcJzsg


By Jean-François Moulinet, Director, Dialogue & Alliance, France
Sunday, May 21, 2023

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