Geneva Spiritual Appeal, 1999
An interfaith religious service was held in St. Pierre Cathedral, Geneva, on Sunday 24th October 1999 to celebrate United Nations Day. The religious leaders involved worked on a "spiritual convention" and produced the "Geneva Spiritual Appeal", which was read and signed on the 24th:
"Because our personal convictions or the religions to which we owe allegiance have common a respect for the integrity of humankind.
Because our personal convictions or the religious to which we owe allegiance have common a rejection of hatred and violence.
Because our personal convictions or the religions to which we owe allegiance have common the hope for a better and more just world.
Representing religious communities and civil society we appeal to the leaders of the world, whatever their field of influence, to strictly adhere to the following three principles:
1) A refusal to invoke a religious or spiritual power to justify violence of any kind,
2) A refusal to invoke a religious or spiritual source to justify discrimination and exclusion;
3) A refusal to exploit or dominate others by means of strength intellectual capacity or spiritual persuasion, wealth or social status.
Grounded in the Genevan tradition of welcome, refuge and compassion, our appeal is open to all whose convictions are in accordance with these three demands".
Yahia Basalamah, Imam of the Mosque in Geneva
Monseigneur Damaskinos, Metropolitan of Switzerland and Exarch of Europe (Ecumenical patricarcate)
The Venerable Dhammika, Head of the Buddhist Vihara at Geneva and of the International Buddhist Foundation
François Garai, Rabbi of the Liberal Synagogue, Geneva
Very Reverend William McComish, Dean of St Pierre Cathedral, Geneva (Protestant)
Reverend Jean-Claude Mokry, Priest of Saint Germain (Old Catholic)
Reverend Jean-Paul de Sury, Episcopal delegate (Roman Catholic Church)
Cornelio Sommaruga, President, International Committee of the Red Cross, Geneva
Mary Robinson, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Geneva
Sadako Ogata, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Geneva
Gro Harle Bruntland, General Director, World Health Organisation, Geneva