As I have reported to you before, the Caux Round Table for Moral Capitalism (CRT) has taken an interest in learning more about certain covenants made by the Prophet Muhammad to respect and protect Christian communities. The CRT’s search for common values, which call forth responsible behaviors in our economic enterprises supported by just societies, has drawn us to the study of our different wisdom traditions. In our study of Islam, the covenants were brought to our attention. Our first workshop to learn more about them from Muslim scholars in the CRT network was held in the Vatican on January 19th of this year.
Our second workshop was just held on October 5th in Istanbul at Istanbul Sehir University. Our former Chairman, Lord Daniel Brennan, convened the meeting with the very able assistance of Professor Abdullah Al-Ahsan and his colleagues at Sehir University. Important presentations were made by Professor Ibrahim Zein and his associate Ahmed El-Wakil of Hamad Bin Khalifa University in Doha, Qatar.
Ahmet Davutoglu, former Prime Minister of Turkey, attended the dinner after the workshop.
My assessment of our study, so far, is that these covenants of the Prophet Muhammad should be accepted as part of the Sunnah of the Prophet and so should become guidelines for mutual respect between Muslims and Christians everywhere. Such respect would bring much needed tolerance and harmony to our global community.
Lord Brennan, Archbishop Silvano Tomasi and I called on His All-Holiness Patriarch Bartholomew of the Eastern Orthodox Church while we were in Istanbul to brief him on the results so far of our workshops. The Patriarch graciously expressed his thanks for our efforts and offered his support as we continue our studies. Previously, we had received very thoughtful encouragement from Pope Francis and Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin.