Last July 5-23, 2010, a few students, a staff, and a lecturer of CRCS UGM were invited to participate in the “Vienna International Christian-Islamic Summer University” (VICISU) 2010 in the University of Vienna, Austria, in cooperation with the Austrian Ministry of Research and Science. The CRCS was represented by Dian Maya Safitri, Yuyun Sri Wahjuni, Sholahudin, Mohammad Rokib, Maria Ingrid Nabuboga, and Dr. Fatimah Husein.
For the November 3, 2010 edition of Wednesday Forum, two of them, Yuyun Sri Wahyu and Mohammad Rokib had the opportunity to share their experience.
Moderated by John Compaglia, a LUCE fellowship student of ICRS from the United States of America, the forum then proceeded to the presentations of Yuyun and Rokib entitled “The Making of Interfaith Peace: Reflections from the Interfaith Dialogue on VICISU 2010 which was delivered alternately. According to them, the second edition of this biennial event involved about 46 Christian and Muslim participants from 16 countries.
Taken place in Stift Altenburg, a Benedictine-Christian order convent in the province of Lower Austria, the event comprised with a variety of courses with various themes relating to the endeavors in establishing the inter-faith dialogue. Not only from Austria or Europe, the professors were also from various countries. Dr. Fatima Hussein performed as a moderator for the course of religious pluralism.
Each day, the participants took six hours classes and one hour tutorial discussion and also engaged in outdoor activities such as sports, afternoon gathering, cross-country trekking, cooking program and talent shows. For religious activities, all participants joined the Christian ritual worship of morning Eucharist, and Islamic ritual worship of Friday prayer. These activities were expected to be significant media to share religious experiences.
Participants of the Wednesday Forum were then so enthusiastic in giving questions and comments. In general, they questioned how VICISU 2010 discussed the very sensitive religious issues, such as the Middle East peace issue, inter-religious conflicts among the grass roots as well as the development of secularism. They also asked about how the CRCS delegates as the Indonesian representatives explained about the inter-faith dialogue in Indonesia.
The Wednesday Forum lasted only for about an hour, shorter than usual. In the closing note, the speakers informed that the VICISU will be held again in the next two years. The professors and lecturers who are involved in this event, have the chance to invite their students. Therefore, those CRCS students who are interested, are pleased to contact Dr. Fatimah Husein. [MoU]
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