Saturday, October 27, 2007

In Africa, Religious Harmony

Here's a beautiful story from Africa about mutual religious respect between Muslims and Christians, via Whispers in the Loggia.

The senior African prelate heading into the papal senate next month is 70 year-old Archbishop Theodore-Adrien Sarr of Dakar in Senegal. Ordained a bishop at 37 and named to the capital see of the West African nation in 2000, the cardinal-designate follows his princely predecessor Hyacinthe Thiandoum, who was given his red hat in 1974 and died three years back.

What marks Sarr out, however, is his status as the top hierarch of a nation whose population is 95 percent Muslim. What's more, relations between Islam and the church in Senegal are reported to be unusually strong, cooperative and reciprocal.

As evidence of this, after his nomination was made public the cardinal-designate noted that his elevation had been sought in prayer... by one of the country's senior imams:

The Senegalese prelate disclosed hours after his nomination that Muslim cleric Habibou Tall had predicted publicly he would be made a cardinal before the end of the year.

"He said he was going to pray for that to happen," Sarr told reporters. "I know he has prayed for that to happen and I thank him for that."...

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