Inter-faith dialogue not enough for global peace - World Council of Churches
The World Council of Churches is asking religious organisations to emphasise intra-faith harmony as a way of promoting inter-faith dialogue for peace building.
Member of the Inter-religious Reference Group, Reverend Dr. Johnson Mbillah says looking beyond denominations and sects cannot guarantee global peace.
He warns against politicisation of religion and "religionisation" of politics as crucial in destabilisation a country leading to the creation of refugees.
He was speaking at the 3rd international conference on Religion and National Development in Kumasi.
Reverend Dr. Mbillah was worried people are no longer interested in the ideals of religion.
He observed, people are moving from orthodoxy to orthopraxy, which according to him means, people fail to practice what they preach.
“We cannot say peace, peace, peace and create a situation of non-peace. That one the criminals can say,” he emphasised.
Reverend Dr. Mbillah says it is about time the world started moving into what he terms "glocalisation" instead of globalisation.
He says local outlook in decision making is very crucial because domestic issues have global consequences.
Reverend Dr. Mbillah warns against politicisation of religion and what he describes as ‘religionisation’ of politics which have the potential to destabilise the country and create refugees.
Former Rector of Tamale Polytechnic, Professor Yakubu Peligah, condemned what he says is the tendency for people condone wrong-doing by religious leaders.
“If we’re not afraid to speak, as people of faith, there is no way we can face our national problems. You have to be able to look into the eyes your leader and tell him, he’s wrong. You cannot take someone’s property when you haven’t earned it,” he admonished.
He says such attitude is inimical to accelerated national development.
The conference was organised by the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology Department of Religious Studies to discuss functional role of religion in societies.
The theme was ‘Inter-religious Dialogue and Global Peace.’
National chairman of the Peace Council, Prof Emmanuel Asante, emphasised the importance of religion in fashioning out societal development.
He called for regulation of indiscriminate springing up of churches to sanitise the religious space.
“We have situations where pastors step on the tummies of pregnant women and they call it freedom of religious expression. As a country, we have the responsibility to regulate the trend, ” he pointed out.