(18 December 2019 | New York, USA) Religions for Peace (RfP) convened over 250 global religious peacebuilders in New York from 11 to 13 December 2019 for a Multi-Religious and Multi-Stakeholder Partnership for Peace and Development. Government officials, diplomats, United Nations representatives, leaders of partner organizations and philanthropists joined the RfP network of religious communities to advance solutions to challenges faced by the international community. On this occasion, RfP conducted the most inclusive and participatory strategic planning process in its nearly 50-year history. The final Strategic Plan will outline the global peace priorities of the represented religious communities—nearly 1 billion people from every region—for the next 5 years.
The process of developing these global priorities has been underway for over a year, beginning with the national and regional level consultations held across the globe by RfP affiliates. At the 10th World Assembly in August 2019 in Lindau, Germany, over 1,000 delegates from 125 countries identified goals and action areas based on these consultations, which were formally adopted in the 10th World Assembly Declaration.
These goals were further augmented by contributions made by RfP coalition via a survey disseminated globally. Contributions from the global network were cumulated into a comprehensive summary, analyzed by participants before and during the session.
Participants in the deliberations included representatives from every region and religious tradition within the RfP global network. Their efforts resulted in a Strategic Plan outline organized by the following themes: peaceful and inclusive societies; gender equality; environment; freedom of thought, conscience and religion; interreligious education; and global partnership. The outline was approved by RfP’s World Council, the highest governing body of the organization comprised of 60 senior religious leaders. The final plan will be launched early next year.