Working towards peace in this world

The LWF delegation with (from left) Area Secretary for Europe Ireneusz Lukas, General Secretary Martin Junge and Archbishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Kazakhstan Jurij Novgorodov meeting with Dariga Nazarbayeva, Chairperson of the Senate of the Kazakh Parliament and Kazakh government officials. All photos: LWF/A. Weyermüller
The LWF delegation with (from left) Area Secretary for Europe Ireneusz Lukas, General Secretary Martin Junge and Archbishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Kazakhstan Jurij Novgorodov meeting with Dariga Nazarbayeva, Chairperson of the Senate of the Kazakh Parliament and Kazakh government officials. All photos: LWF/A. Weyermüller

LWF continues its engagement with the Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions

(LWI) - “The LWF will continue to support efforts for peace and for interreligious dialogue,” said the General Secretary of the Lutheran World Federation (LWF) Martin Junge during his visit to Kazakhstan. On 17 May he had a high-level meeting with Dariga Nazarbayeva in the capital Nur-Sultan. Nazarbayeva is Chairperson of the Senate of the Kazakh Parliament and Chief of the Secretariat of the World and Traditional Religions Leaders Congress. The LWF has taken part in the congress since its inception in 2003.

Junge himself attended the fourth congress in 2012 and reiterated the LWFs willingness to continue its engagement with this event in the future. Junge extended the mandate of the Archbishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the Republic of Kazakhstan (ELCRK) Yuri Novgorodov to represent the LWF in the Secretariat of the World and Traditional Religions Leaders Congress which prepares the congress. Nazarbayeva thanked the General Secretary for the constant support of the Astana forum, and for the participation of the LWF representatives in the activity of the interreligious Congress and its structures.

She informed Junge of the establishment of the First President's Center for Promotion of Inter-Confessional and Inter-Civilizational Dialogue. The centre is called to become an important tool in promoting the goals and objectives of the Astana summit at the international arena and institutionalization of the forum.

 LWF/A. Weyermüller

LWF General Secretary Martin Junge meeting with Dilbar Amirova, Director of the International Center for Cultures and Religions in Nur-Sultan.

Junge also met with the Director of the International Center for Cultures and Religions Dilbar Amirova. The Center which has the shape of a pyramid, hosts the triennial Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions. “The world needs spaces to meet and to talk to each other,” said the LWF General Secretary. “We are grateful for the work you do. The LWF will continue partnering with you.”

The world needs spaces to meet and to talk to each other (...) The LWF will continue partnering with you.
LWF General Secretary Rev. Dr Martin Junge

 LWF/A. Weyermüller

A replica of the Lund cross will become part of the collection of the Museum of Peace and Accord in Nur-Sultan. On the photo are (from left): Jurij Novgorodov, Archbishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the Republic of Kazakhstan, LWF General Secretary Rev.Dr Martin Junge, Zhazira Asanova, Director of the Museum of Peace and Accord, and LWF Area Secretary for Europe Rev.. Dr Ireneusz Lukas.

The building also hosts the Museum of Peace and Accord, which collects and presents items related to participants at the triennial Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions. “This museum is a great encouragement and a source of inspiration,” said LWF General Secretary Martin Junge when he handed over a replica of the Lund cross to the Director of the museum Zhazira Asanova.

The Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions is held once in three years in Nursultan (formerly Astana), Kazakhstan. The congress was initiated by the first President of the Republic of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbaev in 2003.

The first congress was attended by 17 delegations from 23 countries and focused on countering terrorism and extremism issues. 82 delegations from 46 countries attended the sixth congress held in 2018. The theme was “Religious Leaders for a Safe World”.

The LWF was represented at the congress since its inception. In 2003, 2006, 2009 the former LWF General Secretary Ishmael Noko attended; 2012 it was the present General Secretary Martin Junge; 2015 the former LWF President Munib Younan and 2018 LWF Vice-President Urmas Viilma.

 


LWF General Secretary Rev. Dr Martin Junge visited Kazakhstan from 15-21 May 2019 to meet with the LWF member church and local leaders in the country.

The ELCRK is part of the Federation of Evangelical Lutheran Churches in Russia and Other States (ELKRAS) which has been a member of the LWF since 1989.