Euro-traveling of the Institute of Ecumenical Studies

2013-12-01 19:15

Unlike previous years, this year’s forum was held at the same time in three cities – Lyon, Paris and Strasbourg. The forum gathered the largest number of foreign visitors from different European countries: Germany, the Czech Republic, Slovenia, Poland and, of course, Ukraine. The meeting was visited by the staff and students of the Institute of Ecumenical Studies, at the Ukrainian Catholic University, that have been conducting the Ecumenical Social Weeks since 2008 in Lviv.

The highway journey to Strasbourg ran through Poland, Germany, and back through the Czech Republic. It allowed us to visit cities such as Wroclaw, Dresden, Prague and pray in major European churches. In Dresden, we were welcomed by the family of Rev. Bohdan Luk, whose wife and six children gave us a tour of the city. Afterwards, Rev. Bohdan made an evening liturgy for the Greek Catholic parishioners of Dresden, which we were lucky to attend.

In Strasbourg the Ukrainian delegation was met by host families – volunteers and workers of the Social Week, that was opening the next day at the University of Strasbourg.

With the help of live video streaming the audience that gathered at the university was able to communicate with Paris and Lyon – to ask questions and participate in discussions.

The conference participants were thinking about how to address issues of employment and unemployment today, so that everyone could use their right to work.

The participants reviewed a number of initiatives, for example, such as the social and solidarity economy, new relationships between workers and companies, new perspectives on career, which can cause a real circle of changes. An important role in employment and fighting unemployment was attached to Christian organizations. Also, the world of new technologies should bring us inventions and continue to work tirelessly to put people at the center of social relations.

Therefore, the next topic of the Social Week to be held in 2014 in Lille will be new information technology, biotechnology, nanotechnology and the impact of these changes on people.