Mediterranean encounters September 18-24, 2023 Marseilles.     

The Mediterranean faces several major challenges: political crises, economic inequalities, human migrations and climate change. To meet these challenges, it has an immensely rich cultural and historical heritage. The Mediterranean Meetings will allow bishops and young people from the five shores of the Mediterranean to meet, share their particular experiences and reflect on what, in the specificity of each person’s experience, can benefit everyone.

Cardinal Jean-Marc Aveline, Archbishop of Marseille, invited Pope Francis to participate in these meetings on Saturday September 23.

“The Mediterranean has known for a long time this mixture of cultures and civilizations that the world as a whole is experiencing more and more. Insofar as European societies are marked by greater cultural pluralism, the years to come will see the Church become even more committed to responding to the great challenge of dialogue. This must become the grammar of human conviviality where it is a question of understanding the other and of living together without being frightened by the difference. For what is dialogue in general and interreligious dialogue in particular, if not a new way of considering the other? No longer an abstract object of mission but a subject to which I address myself, a brother whom I seek, and who is beyond my cultural and religious borders. Dialogue is situated between confession of faith in Christ and openness to otherness, with respect and sincere esteem for every person, thus contrary to relativism, self-closure and the strategy of conquest. »

Pope Francis, Message to the ICM, From St-Jean de Lateran, September 26, 2022.