Listening Hearts Bind IFCL Basilan | Oct 13, 2010

After the successful launching of the Inter-Faith Council of Leaders (IFCL)-Basilan on July 26, 2010,

a follow-on activity was organized to gather friends and prospective members of IFCL on October 7, 2010 at the Basilan State College in Isabela City, Basilan.

The gathering was made possible with the enthusiastic work of the IFCL-Basilan Coordinators, Prof. Alzad Sattar and Mrs. January Zanoria, who voluntarily offered their time promote the Silsilah spirituality of dialogue and peace in the province. Their commitment has the support of their respective better halves, Mrs. Nujum Sattar and Mr. Joel Zanoria, who were also present during the meeting.

The attendees at the gathering represented various sectors: the academe, religious, civil society, GO’s, PO’s and NGO’s who expressed not only their frustrations, fears and anxieties but most importantly their aspirations for a peaceful and progressive province of Basilan. The activity served as an opportunity for the members to build friendship and sincerely recognize the capacity of each member to be a leader in their own communities and groups working for dialogue and peace.

Members from the religious group shared the importance of the tenets of each religion which if sincerely followed by the followers of the religion who practice the virtues and fundamentals taught by the religion will make peace more easily at hand. It was also noted that the young be encouraged through formation to work for building good relationships and better understanding between people of different cultures and religions.

 

A representative from the academe, Dr. Nasser A. Salain, president of Basilan State College, said that the institution is not just a learning place but is at the same time a conduit in promoting the Culture of Dialogue (COD), as path to peace.

One member of the group saw the statement of the commitment drawn by a group in the Summer Course on Muslim-Christian Dialogue which was published in the 25th Anniversary Edition of the Silsilah Bulletin. He has one of those who formulated the statement and seeing it again reconnected him to his Silsilah experience.

The members also expressed their need for an on-going formation so as to integrate the spirituality of dialogue in their family, work and community, to sustain them in their commitment to promote dialogue and peace. A majority of the members expressed their desire to reach those in the community to give an orientation on COD in one of the future activities.

For Silsilah, listening from the heart is a characteristic of a true and sincere dialogue. This is one of the “styles” which has guided Silsilah along its journey of twenty six years as a movement. The late Bishop Tutud told Fr. Sebastiano D’Ambra, PIME during the beginning of Silsilah that “dialogue is a project of one hundred years”.

After the meeting, all expressed their full support to be actively involved with IFCL-Basilan in all its endeavors for better understanding, respect and love among people of diverse culture and religion.

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