Dozens of religious leaders from across Israel gathered in Jerusalem Monday to publicly call for peace in Ukraine.
The speakers included His Beatitude Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem Pierbattista Pizzaballa, Sheik Hassan Abu Galion, Rabbi David Rosen, and Muslim and Druze religious leaders, who encouraged Patriarch Kirill to use his position as head of the Russian Orthodox Church to mediate peace talks.
Rabbi Rasson Arousi, representing the Chief Rabbinate of Israel, said "We recite a holy call on behalf of hundreds of millions of believers around the world to stop the killing in Ukraine." He quoted the Prophet Isaiah, "Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, nor shall they learn war anymore."
Sheikh Hassan Abu Galion of Rahat said, "All leaders must choose the path of peace. Anyone who saves one soul is if that person saved the entire world."
This interfaith gathering follows the delivery of an interfaith letter to Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill, calling on him to speak with President Putin to seek peace.
The letter was signed 150 Jerusalem and global religious leaders and clergy, including H.B. Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem Pierbattista Pizzaballa, H.E. Cardinal Christoph Schönborn, Sri Sri Ravi Sankar, Dharma Master Hsin Dao, Grand Mufti Mustafa Ceric and Chief Rabbi of Jerusalem emeritus Aryeh Stern.
At the gathering in Jerusalem, the letter was taped to the gate of the Russian Orthodox Church.
The prominent religious leaders, representing the world's major faith traditions, expressed their deep concern with the war and affirmed the key role religious leaders play in promoting peace between Russia and Ukraine.
"This is a moment when religious leaders should raise the banner of peace and do everything in their power to promote it," said Rabbi Yonatan Neril, director of The Interfaith Center for Sustainable Development.
The gathering took place on Monday, March 21 at 13:30 pm, across from Moscow Square in Jerusalem, outside of the Russian Orthodox Cathedral of the Holy Trinity.