Today the first edition of the Interreligious Lunch, organised by the Interfaith Youth Council – Italy, took place at the office of Universal Peace Federation in Cola Montano 40. The event brought together believer of 3 different traditions and 8 different countries. After an initial presentation we carried on to the typical ice-breaker, which however was quite uncommon: each person was encouraged to pair up with someone whom they didn’t know and talk for 10 minutes in order to present them afterwards to the public. Already this part brought some happy moments as for example one African participant expressed his gratitude for being able to speak for the first time with an Asian woman.
Following that the activity that gives name to the event: the lunch, where everyone (in a very simple and family-like way) who brought something explained what it was, because there were meals from all around the world. However, before the lunch three prayers were offered: one in Korean, one in one of the Ghana’s languages and one in Italian. This to emphasise the interreligious aspect of the event and to try and unify as much as possible the participants. Once the lunch and a time for relaxing were concluded we moved to the important part of cultural performances: the participants were encouraged to offer a song, a dance or other. It was here that the IYC group leader offered a fantastic Czech song, followed by a duet of two siblings, a funny even though a little bit dangerous game on trust, an amazing guitar play by two brothers and the awesome performance of the Dragostea Dintei song by one of the Council members. And let us not forget the jewel of the night: a break-dancing exhibition! Almost everyone offered something, even those who were afraid or a little bit more shy than the others. At the conclusion of the beautiful performances everyone was handed a participation diploma and we took a commemorative photo. All in all this was a unique, pleasant and unforgettable experience which ought to be repeated!