GOI International Award honors Silsilah Dialogue Movement with peace award PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 22 November 2013 00:00

The Goi Peace Foundation will bestow the 2013 Goi Peace Award on the Silsilah Dialogue Movement, a grassroots initiative promoting interfaith dialogue and peace, on November 27, 2013. Founded in Zamboanga City by Fr. Sebastiano D’Ambra, he will receive the award at a fitting ceremony during the Goi Peace Foundation Forum 2013 to be held at Nikkei Hall in Tokyo, Japan.

The annual Goi Peace Award honors individuals and organizations in various fields that have made outstanding contributions toward the realization of a peaceful and harmonious world for humanity and all life on earth. Created in 2000, previous Goi Peace Award recipients include James Lovelock, Oscar Arias, Bill Gates, Deepak Chopra and Helena Norberg-Hodge.

Established in Tokyo, Japan in 1999, the Goi Peace Foundation is a public benefit organization with a mission to support the evolution of humanity toward a peaceful and harmonious new civilization. Through various educational and outreach programs, it promotes consciousness, values and wisdom for creating peace, and builds cooperation among individuals and organizations across diverse fields, including education, science, culture and the arts. The Foundation is an NGO in Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations. It also maintains official relations with UNESCO.

The selection committee has chosen the Silsilah Dialogue Movement for the Goi Peace Award “in recognition of its many years of commitment to promote dialogue for peace and solidarity among Muslims and Christians in the Philippines. The dedicated efforts of the members of the movement have not only advanced the process towards lasting peace in their communities, but have inspired many people around the world with an example of true dialogue based on spirituality.”

“Silsilah” is Arabic which literally means chain or link. Fr. D’Ambra used this word because it expresses the idea of mankind's unity under God, the Creator of all.  As used by the Sufis (Muslim Mystics), it describes a process of attaining an experience of the Divine. The same root word is used as "genealogical tree" which implies a spiritual chain of humanity as created by the same God.

Thus, "Silsilah" in the context of the Movement is taken as an inspiring and key concept to describe Muslims, Christians and people to describe Muslims, Christians and people of other living faiths who are moving together as one universal family towards a shared vision and mission of dialogue and peace.  Since 1984, Silsilah Dialogue Movement has been conducting dialogues, seminars, trainings, and other peace related activities involving people from all walk of life, culture, and of different beliefs.

By Dante Corteza

Isaiah 26:3. ““The steadfast of mind You will keep in perfect peace, because he trusts in You.”