With everything going on in the world, it’s not often we see different religions uniting to bridge gaps between people, nations and cultures. This is exactly what the Norwegian Bridge Builder Award ceremony aimed to highlight last Thursday, the 25th of November in Oslo.
Why is this such a big deal? Well, Saudi’s Dr Mohammed Bin Abdulkarim Al-Issa, Secretary-General of the Muslim World League (MWL) and Chairman of the Muslim Scholars Association was one of the three recipients of the Bridge Builder Award! While, Rev. Prof. Dr Ioan Sauca, acting general secretary of the World Council of Churches, and Michael Melchior, Chief Rabbi and leader of Israel’s Religious Peace Initiative, were the other two recipients.
If there’s one thing you should take away from this article, it’s that the importance of instilling a sense of sincerity and purity into our societies is central to achieving “lasting peace.”
This is the first time that high-ranking officials of Islam, Judaism, and Christianity have met in Oslo to emphasize mutual respect and tolerance, as well as to declare a clear desire for deeper interfaith cooperation.The committee said at the ceremony via Arab News
But, let’s go back and place some emphasis on the fact that Dr Al-Issa is both Arab and Muslim. It’s no secret that Western media don’t often portray us in a good light… but let’s focus on the fact that the committee recognised Dr Al-Issa as a leading force in promoting peace and ideas for using religion as a tool to bring people closer together.
Dr Al-Issa believes that building peace is a goal that international governments should pursue. In addition, Dr Al-Issa discussed the unfairness of the COVID-19 vaccine distribution, arguing that the social class divide is the cause of this injustice, with the poor having little to no access to vaccines while the wealthy had greater access.
“We should strive to promote tolerance, coexistence, love, and cooperation.”
This is definitely a moment of pride for Saudi Arabia, that one of their own, the Muslim World League Chief, has acquired such a prestigious award. Certainly, a moment that has made the entire region happy.