The Lutheran Bishop for Jordan and the Holy Land, Munib A. Younan, is the winner of the 34th Niwano Peace Prize.
The prize is awarded for his
perseverance and compassion in encouraging dialogue between faith
groups in the Holy Land. His commitment emphasizes the communion between
faiths, as an integral part in the fight for peace.
Bishop Younan - who was born in 1950 in Jerusalem - has been
president of the Lutheran World Federation since 2010. During his long
career he has held numerous positions in Lutheran organizations and
interreligious – he was also president of the Lutheran Council in Asia -
and used his position to create a fully-fledged network among religious
leaders of different faiths in the Middle East .
Bishop Younan was one of 14 religious leaders who signed the
Declaration of Alexandria in 2002, a document in which rabbis, sheikhs,
and bishops assured their commitment to establish peace in the Holy
Land, which is holy for all three monotheistic religions.
The reason for the award states that in a world characterized by
leaders who seek to highlight differences and contrasts, Bishop Younan
has constantly tried to prove the opposite.
Bishop Younan embodies the
qualities that the Niwano Peace Foundation attributes to religious
The awards ceremony will take place in Tokyo on 27 July. In addition to
the award, Bishop Younan will receive a medal a sum of money.
The selection process of the Award winner is vetted by some 600 people
and organizations, representing 125 countries and religions.
are evaluated by an international selection committee of the Niwano
Peace Prize, which currently consists of ten religious leaders involved
in movements for peace and interreligious cooperation and from various
parts of the world.