Youth PoWR 2017 - Light in Dark Times

Performers at Youth PoWR, August 2017 Photos: Columban Centre for Christian-Muslim Relations

Performance by Natyanivedan Indian Dance School

More than 200 young people aged 17- 35 participated in this year's Youth PoWR (Parliament of the World’s Religions) at Santa Sabina College, Strathfield, on 20 August.

Youth PoWR is a multi-faith initiative of the Columban Mission Institute’s Centre for Christian-Muslim Relations. It brings together young people from diverse religions – Aboriginal, Baha’i, Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism and Sikhism – and secular society.


Participants engaged with each other on the practical implications of this year’s theme, ‘Together Be The Light in Dark Times’.

The program featured inspiring talks, dynamic performances expressing compassion and justice in artistic form, and great engagement of the young people with each other.

Muslim Speaker Sourosh Cina

There were speakers from four faiths: Leonard Choy (Buddhism), Rabbi Nicole Roberts (Judaism) Matin Gouniai (Baha’i) and Sourosh Cina (Islam). The performers were: Hope Uniting Band (Christian), Natyanivedan Indian Dance School (Hindu) and Shaheedi Faujan Gatka Akhara (Sikh).

Hope Uniting Band

Hope Uniting Band

Participants gathered in small groups and considered a range of issues. ‘Racism and Discrimination’ and ‘Climate Change and the Environment’ emerged as the two most important issues to them and to young people in their faith community. The group participants then discussed their chosen issue in depth and came up with one concrete, practical action to address that issue. The entire gathering then voted on the action proposals.

Through meeting, discussing and agreeing on shared commitments, the members of Youth PoWR demonstrated how young people from different religions can model harmonious interreligious living for the rest of the world to emulate.

Check out the highlights video of Youth PoWR 2017!

The Sydney Statement - A5 Booklet

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