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Wednesday, 25 June 2014

ChriIslam Ecumenical bells : Berlin House of One: The first church-mosque-synagogue? Vatican partners with Islamic museum for unique exhibition

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THE ISLAMIZING OF AMERICA’S CHURCHES HOW SOME PASTORS ARE SELLING OUT THE FAITH


Berlin House of One: The first church-mosque-synagogue? 


A woman holds a model of the House of One
Berlin thinks it is making religious history as Muslims, Jews and Christians join hands to build a place where they can all worship. The House of One, as it is being called, will be a synagogue, a church and a mosque under one roof.

An architecture competition has been held and the winner chosen. The striking design is for a brick building with a tall, square central tower. Off the courtyard below will be the houses of worship for the three faiths - the synagogue, the church and the mosque. It is to occupy a prominent site - Petriplatz - in the heart of Berlin.

The location is highly significant, according to one of the three religious leaders involved, Rabbi Tovia Ben Chorin. "From my Jewish point of view the city where Jewish suffering was planned is now the city where a centre is being built by the three monotheistic religions which shaped European culture," he told the BBC.
Can they get on? "We can. That there are people within each group who can't is our problem but you have to start somewhere and that's what we are doing."

The imam involved, Kadir Sanci, sees the House of One as "a sign, a signal to the world that the great majority of Muslims are peaceful and not violent". It's also, he says, a place where different cultures can learn from each other.
Each of the three areas in the House will be the same size, but of a different shape, architect Wilfried Kuehn points out.
Architect Wilfried Kuehn holds the model of House of One
Floorplan of The House of One
"Each of the singular spaces is designed according to the religious needs, the particularities of each faith," he says. "There are for instance two levels in the mosque and the synagogue but there's only one level in the church. There will be an organ in the church. There are places to wash feet in the mosque."
He and his team of architects researched designs for the three types of worshipping place and found more similarities than expected.

Find out more

You can hear Stephen Evans's radio report on the House of One on the Sunday programme at 07:10 BST on 22 June on BBC Radio 4, or catch up later on the BBC iPlayer
"What's interesting is that when you go back a long time, they share a lot of architectural typologies. They are not so different," Kuehn says. "It's not necessary for instance for a mosque to have a minaret - it's only a possibility and not a necessity. And a church doesn't need a tower. This is about going back to the origins when these three faiths were close and shared a lot architecturally".
In the past, different faiths have used the same buildings but not usually at the same period. Mosques in southern Spain became cathedrals after the Christian conquest. In Turkey, churches became mosques. In Britain old Welsh chapels have sometimes become mosques as areas change - and Brick Lane mosque in the East End of London started as a church in the 18th Century, later became a synagogue before turning to Islam, and has now become a place of worship for the newly arrived Muslim community.
But that's different from the three faiths worshipping as neighbours under one roof.
German Pastor Gregor Hohberg, Israeli Rabbi Tovia Ben-Chorin and German-Turkish Imam Kadir Sanci hold three bricks
The hands of Rabbi Tovia Ben-Chorin, Father Gregor Hohberg and Imam Kadir Sanci are see as they hold symbolic bricks
The idea came from the Christian side of the triangle.
Pastor Gregor Hohberg, a Protestant parish priest, says it will be built where the first church in Berlin, dating back to the 12th Century, was once situated. St Petri's Church was badly damaged at the end of World War Two as the Red Army liberated Berlin. What remained was destroyed in the period after the war by the East German authorities.
Then, six years ago, archaeologists uncovered remains from an ancient graveyard and it was decided that something should be done to resurrect a community and its place of worship. The project expanded and changed from a single-faith building to the present three-faith plan. Money is now being raised to turn the architects' plans into bricks and mortar.
St Peter's Church in 1850 and graves being discovered in 2008 St Peter's Church in 1850, and graves being excavated in 2008
Each faith will keep its distinctive ways within its own areas, Pastor Hohberg says.
"Under one roof: one synagogue, one mosque, one church. We want to use these rooms for our own traditions and prayers. And together we want to use the room in the middle for dialogue and discussion and also for people without faith.
"Berlin is a city where people come together from all over the world and we want to give a good example of togetherness."
It was not always the Berlin way.

Vatican partners with Islamic museum for unique exhibition

For the first time ever, the Vatican is staging an unusual exhibition in the Emirate of Shajah. The show is seen as a sign of openness and cooperation between religions.
Ulrike al-Khamis has outdone herself. In a project that began six years ago, the art historian from Germany was tasked with bringing the extensive collections of the Emir of Sharjah into shape when the Sharjah Museum of Islamic Civilization was renovated and re-opened. The exhibition she is now presenting in a sparkling domed building almost the size of a soccer field has exceeded expectations.

"It is the first collaboration of the Vatican with an Arab country," said al-Khamis. Indeed, the exhibition is one-of-a-kind - not only because it presents excellent artworks but also because it furthers dialogue between Christians and Muslims.

A mashup of Western arts, Islam and Buddhism
A Chinese vase from the early 18th century bearing an Arabic inscription, Photo: sharjahmuseums.ae On display: a Chinese vase from the early 18th century bearing an Arabic inscription
The artworks on show from the Ethnological Museum of the Vatican stem from the 12th to the 19th century, but also include valuable objects from everyday life in the Arab world. Vases and bracelets, seals and armor, tapestries and precious daggers are on display. All the works come from the Islamic region between Morocco and Sudan all the way to Western China, but are now owned by the Vatican.

Many of the objects embody the dialogue between the Muslim and Western worlds. There's a dime-sized Koran produced in a print shop in Glasgow, and yellow mugs from Western China that bear an Arabic inscription surrounded by lotus flowers, which are a Buddhist symbol.

"We had only one year to prepare this show," said Ulrike al-Khamis. When the German art expert began advising in Sharjah, one of the emirates of the United Arab Emirates, she did not know what she was getting herself into.

"I traveled to Rome with my colleagues. We, the experts from Sharjah, and some Christian art historians searched the chambers of the Vatican together and discovered several pieces that had never been exhibited before," she recalled.

The result is a unique show in Sharjah that presents a comprehensive look at Islam.
The exhibition So that you may know each other in the Museum of Islamic Civilization in Sharjah at night, Photo: sharjahmuseums.ae "So that you may know each other" is the fitting title of the exhibition
Presents for the Pope

Most of the objects now on show had arrived in the Vatican in 1925 when Pope Pius XI hosted a kind of international cultural exhibition comprised of gifts presented to him from private donors and missionaries stationed all around the world. There were artworks by Australian aborigines as well as pieces from Latin America, Asia and Polynesia. From the Islamic world, there were swords and seals, jewelry and garments. It was a truly global exhibition.
Ulrike al-Khamis showing the exhibition to Sheikh Sultan III bin Mohammed al-Qasimi, Emir of Sharjah, and the Director of the Ethnological Museum in the Vatican, Father Nicola Mapelli, Photo: sharjahmuseum.ae Ulrike al-Khamis is pictured with the Emir of Sharjah, Sultan al-Qasimi (center), and the director of the Ethnological Museum in the Vatican, Father Nicola Mapelli (left)

Around 100,000 works of art were collected in Rome for the show, but needed a permanent location after that. In 1926, the Pope established a new museum to keep the works, the Ethnological Museum, which was housed in the Lateran Palace. Half a century later, the museum was relocated to its present site in the Vatican.

However, it has been shut down several times since then and never fully reopened. The museum's current director, Father Nicola Mapelli, has sought to make the collection's works available via partnerships with other cultural institutions - such as the Museum of Islamic Civilization in Sharjah.

The art of diplomacy
In the case of Sharjah, the Vatican's museum found a like-minded partner. The small emirate is led by Sultan al-Qasimi, an intellectual interested in culture who's written a number of books himself and is interested in furthering intercultural dialogue. More than 20 years ago, al-Qasimi launched the most important biennial for contemporary art in the Arab world, the Sharjah Biennial, and more than 40 museums have been established under his reign.
Boots from Senegal, included in the exhibition So that you may know each other in the Museum of Islamic Civilization in Sharjah at night, Photo: sharjahmuseums.ae, Photo: sharjahmuseums.ae These boots from Senegal are included in the exhibition
The fact that Rome is lending its works for the first time is an act of diplomacy in line with Pope Francis's current policies. While Pope Benedict XVI had distanced himself from other religions, his successor is pursuing a different policy. In October last year, during a speech for the sponsors of the Ethnological Museum, Pope Francis pointed out the unifying role of culture in religious, social and moral matters.
In the exhibition catalog, the Vatican writes that it will treat the Islamic objects "with the same amount of respect as the Leonardos, Raffaels and Michaelangelos." Fittingly, the title of the exhibition is "So that you may know each other." which is actually a verse from the Koran in response to the question of why people are so different.
Mutual understanding between Christians and Muslims is exactly what the exhibition aims at. Taking history into account, dialogue between the religious groups cannot be taken for granted.


Pope Francis Orders Vatican To Create First Ever Art Exhibition To Promote Chrislam


 http://www.nowtheendbegins.com/blog/?p=22878

Francis carrying on Rick Warren’s work with Chrislam

And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.” Revelation 18:4

Pope Francis can best be described as a man on a mission. That mission seems to be the unification of the Vatican’s Roman Catholic system with Islam. This demonic hybrid is what is more commonly known as Chrislam. Francis is building on the already impressive body of work in this field started by apostate Emergent Church preacher Rick Warren.

German website DW reports that for the first time ever, the Vatican is staging an unusual exhibition in the Emirate of Shajah. The show is seen as a sign of openness and cooperation between religions.
It is the first collaboration of the Vatican with an Arab country,” said al-Khamis. Indeed, the exhibition is one-of-a-kind – not only because it presents excellent artworks but also because it furthers dialogue between Christians and Muslims.

pope-francis-orders-vatican-to-sponsor-chrislam-islamic-art-exhibit
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The fact that Rome is lending its works for the first time is an act of diplomacy in line with Pope Francis’s current policies. While Pope Benedict XVI had distanced himself from other religions, his successor is pursuing a different policy. In October last year, during a speech for the sponsors of the Ethnological Museum, Pope Francis pointed out the unifying role of culture in religious, social and moral matters.

In the exhibition catalog, the Vatican writes that it will treat the Islamic objects “with the same amount of respect as the Leonardos, Raffaels and Michaelangelos.” Fittingly, the title of the exhibition is “So that you may know each other.” which is actually a verse from the Koran in response to the question of why people are so different. Mutual understanding between Christians and Muslims is exactly what the exhibition aims at.