US Ambassador J. Randolph Evans visits the Luxembourg School of Religion & Society
Religious Communities strive together to work for peace and to develop identities respecting diversity
On April 29, 2019, the LSRS and the Centre Jean XXIII had the honor to welcome H. E. US Ambassador J. Randolph Evans for an official visit. He is the first Ambassador of the United States to visit the institution. Despite his many obligations and a very filled agenda, he took the time to be informed about the life of this unique institution and to share a meal with staff members of the LSRS and representatives of different religious communities that signed an agreement with the State.
The Ambassador was welcomed by the director of both institutions, Prof. Jean Ehret, Ph.D. and his colleagues Prof. Christian Doude van Troostwijk, Ph.D. (Philosophy), Prof. Alberto F. Ambrosio, Ph.D. (Theology of the Religions), Prof. Georg Rubel, Dr. theol. (Biblical Theology), Prof. Daniel Laliberté (Professor of Liturgy and Catechesis), Ms Isabelle Wies, M.A. (Chief Librarian).
The visit started with a presentation of the LSRS, followed by a guided tour of the building. Ambassador Evans showed particular interest in the library and in the medieval manuscripts. In his opening remarks, director Jean Ehret said: “The Centre Jean XXIII has already good relationships with the United States. We welcome students from Sacred Heart University Luxembourg, a branch of Sacred Heart University Fairfield, Connecticut.”
He mentioned also that the Centre Jean XXIII is the official address of the “Conseil des Cultes Conventionnés,” the Council of the Religious Communities that signed an agreement with the State.
The LSRS considers itself as a Catholic institution for research and higher education that collaborates with people and institutions of these religious communities. Director Jean Ehret welcomed the representatives of the different religious Communities as friends and thanked them for accepting the invitation: “Together we strive to show that religious communities are fully part of the Luxembourgish Society, that we are proud to serve our society and that we work on educating the members of our congregation to develop an identity that is full of respect for the other in his or her difference. The Anglican community has its offices in this building; an Orthodox Church celebrates regularly the Liturgy in our Chapel.”
During lunch, preceded by a moment of prayer during which Jewish, Muslim, and Christian prayers were said, Ambassador Evans raised the question of the purpose of life with the representatives of the different religions. He expressed his concern about the increasing number of suicides, particularly among young people and invited them to work together on preventing suicide. The visit was an intense experience of dialogue and social commitment. The LSRS is proud to have had the honor and the opportunity to welcome Ambassador J. Randolph Evans.
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