Bahrain will, today, host the 16th meeting of the UAE-based Muslim Council of Elders coinciding with the historical official visit of Pope Francis visit to the country.
Pope Francis is in Bahrain at the invitation of the country’s leader, King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa. The visit aimed at fostering dialogue between Christians and Muslims.
The meeting will be chaired by His Eminence Grand Imam of Al Azhar, Dr. Ahmed Al Tayyib in the presence of Pope Francis.
The meeting will review global challenges, including climate changes, lack of food and water, and other humanitarian catastrophes, and the role of religious leaders in addressing them through an Islamic-Christian dialogue.
Grand Imam of Al Azhar and Pope Francis signed a joint document pledging interfaith coexistence during Francis’ UAE trip in 2019.
The first papal visit to Bahrain is his second voyage as pope to the Arabian Peninsula, after a 2019 trip to the United Arab Emirates also aimed at inter-faith outreach.
The Argentine pope has made outreach to Muslim communities a priority during his papacy, visiting major Muslim countries such as Türkiye, Egypt and Iraq, and most recently in September, Kazakhstan.