The Year of Celebrations of Cyril and Methodius will be Opened by a Conference on Beginnings of Evangelization

25. 1. 2013

Ing. Jaromír Talíř, the SAG president said, "The point of the conference is not the past. On the contrary, we would like to talk about the presence and the future, which is supported also by the selection of high-quality speakers." The conference, which will take place at EXE Iris Hotel at Vršovice in Prague and in the Archbishop's Palace in Prague, will be held under the auspices of the Archbishop of Prague, Cardinal Dominik Duka OP, who welcomed the plan of the organizer.

On Friday, the program will be opened by the SAG President, ing. Jaromír Talíř with the secretary of the Ackermann-Gemeinde association, Matthias Dörr. The opening lecture titled "Dialogue of Spirituality and Society: Do we Need New Cyril and Methodius?" will be delivered by a theologian and pastoralist doc. Aleš Opatrný form the Catholic Theological Faculty of Charles University. Apart from the speaker and the moderator P. Josef Hurt, who is a chaplain for university students in Ústí nad Labem, the discussion that will follow the contribution will be attended by P. Dr. Martin Leitgöb CSsR, who is a spiritual leader of the German Catholic Association in Prague. He will offer not only his perspective based on his experience in the Czech Republic, but also from Germany and Austria.

On Saturday afternoon, we will welcome an important Czech sociologist, teacher, priest and author of spiritual literature, Prof. Tomáš Halík, and a German theologian and a former director of the Institute for World Religions and Missions that belongs to Sankt Georgen university in Frankfurt am Main, Prof. Albert-Peter Rethmann. Prof. Halík will open the second day of the conferece by his lecture titled "Inculturation of Christianity into Society" and Prof. Rethmann will follow with his contribution titled "Testimony, Invitation and Conversion - Missions and Inculturation in Christianity and Islam". Thus, he will offer to participants experience of the two strongest European religions. Both lecturers will then discuss that topic. Mgr. Daniel Hermann, Director of the Institute for the Study of Totalitarian Regimes will be a moderator of that discussion.

The closing day of the conference will be opened by a holy mass in the Church of John of Nepomuk at Hradčany in Prague. After the mass, the main celebrant, Dominik Cardinal Duka OP, is inviting those who participated in the conference to the hall of Cardinal Beran at the Prague Archbishopric. There, Prof. Ludvík Armbruster SJ and Dr. Václav Cílek will meet at the round table to discuss the theme "From a Pilgrim to a Missionary: Quo Vadis, Domine?" The closing discussion will be moderated by a historian Dr. Jan Stříbrný from the Czech Christian Academy. Together with the two discussants, he will try to bring to mind the meaning of human pilgrimaging, spirituality and perhaps also foundations for the present and the future.

The ecumenical association "Sdružení Ackermann-Gemeinde" was founded in the Czech Republic at the beginning of 1999. The role of the association is to contribute to the constructive formation of the future in Europe while acknowledging the common history of Czechs anf Germans lasting for centuries. In its activities the association proceeds from Christian principles. Its name is derived from a work of literature from the 14th century "Ackermann aus Böhmen"/"Plowman from Bohemia", which was written by John of Žatec, who was born in western Bohemia. Further information available at (Jan Heinzl)

Source: Prague Archbishopric, 24th January 2013


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  • Here are our roots.

    (Blessed John Paul II, 22nd April 1990, Velehrad)

    They wanted to become part of those nations and to share their destiny in everything. Here, in this place, at Velehrad, in Moravia, we can feel the historical legacy of the kingdom in a peculiar way – we can feel even those who became its keepers and guardians.

    (Blessed John Paul II)

  • For us, people of the present age, their apostolate contains even the elocution of the ecumenical appeal, i.e. to build unity again, in a peaceful reconciliation, which later after their deaths was heavily damaged, and in the first place the unity between the East and the West.

    (Blessed John Paul II)

  • Their work is also a very important contribution to the growth of the common Christian roots of Europe, which by their firmness and viability create one of the main contact points, which must be respected by every serious attempt at reunification of our continent in a new and topical way.

    (Blessed John Paul II)

  • The story of both brothers, Cyril and Methodius, is a distinct example of unity.

    Saints Cyril and Methodius contributed, to a great extent, to the building of Europe, not only regarding its Christian religious community but also concerning its civil and cultural unity.

    (Blessed John Paul II)

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