ANGLICANS, JEWS AND MUSLIMS WORK AS VOLUNTEERS AT WYD
Leaders of Other Religions Express Support for Event
TORONTO, JULY 25, 2002 (ZENIT.org-Avvenire).- Toronto's multicultural World Youth Day
celebration is not just for Catholics.
Among some 20,000 volunteers, there are Anglicans, Jews and faithful of other religions. Leaders of
major religious communities have expressed their support and urged collaboration.
The exact number of non-Catholic volunteers is unknown, because the application forms for these jobs
did not require the identification of religious affiliation.
That the event is welcome, was confirmed by the appeal that Anglican Archbishop Terence Finlay of
Toronto made to his flock: "Christ calls us to love God and our neighbor. This event gives us the
possibility to deepen our relation with God and to know our neighbor better." Toronto has 90,000
The Jewish community has also responded to the occasion by housing young people in its schools.
"It is an incredible opportunity for all," said Bernie Faber, executive director for Ontario of the
Canadian Jewish Congress. "Together we can reflect on our future, on society, on good, and there is
no better way to do so than through dialogue and meeting. John Paul II's visit pleases many, regardless
of the faith they profess. It is an honor to receive him."
Amir Etemadi, leader of the Muslim community, is counting on the "inspirational force" of the event to
the point that he hopes that one day WYD "will be held in various parts of the world simultaneously."
"This Pope is one of the most important world symbols," Etemadi said. "I admire him for having been
often at the center of events. We must not and cannot forget that war still exists in this planet. Many
conflicts have their origin in the lack of dialogue between religious groups. To choose another way is
the least we can do together."