Vatican City, 15 May 2014 (VIS) – The Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue celebrates the fiftieth anniversary of its foundation on Monday 19 May. The dicastery was instituted with the name “Secretariat for non-Christians” on 19 May 1964 by Pope Paul VI, with the Apostolic Letter “Progrediente Concilio”, with the aim of paying attention to those who were without the Christian religion and to whom the words of the Lord would seem to refer: “And I have other sheep that are not of this fold. I must bring them also”.
The Pontifical Council will hold a conference in the afternoon on the theme “50 years of service in interreligious dialogue”; the speakers will be Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, president of the dicastery, Fr. Miguel Angel Ayuso Guixot, M.C.C.J., secretary, and Fr. Damian Howard, S.J., of Heythrop College, London. The document “Dialogue in Truth and Charity: Pastoral Orientations for Interreligious Dialogue”, which will be published and distributed to those present, offers guidelines for pastors and faithful, based on the concrete indications and experiences of the local churches, to continue along the path of interreligious dialogue.