Cardinal Poupard opens art gallery at Old Goa
Nov 21, 2006
The president of the Pontifical Council for Culture and president of the Pontifical Council for Inter-Religious Dialogue, Cardinal Paul Poupard, who arrived in Goa yesterday, today inaugurated the Kristu Kala Mandir Art Gallery at Old Goa.
(navhindtimes.com) Panaji, Nov 20: The Archbishop of Goa and Daman, Rev Felipe Neri Ferrao and other church dignitaries were present in the Episcopal Palace where the Art Gallery is housed.
Speaking from a prepared statement at a press conference after the inauguration, Cardinal Poupard explained the importance and meaning of culture to the Church.
The Catholic Church has always sought dialogue with the contemporary world, he said. The Declaration on the Relation of the Church to Non-Christians has a consistent exhortation for dialogue. In fact it says, ‘’The Church therefore exhorts her sons, that through dialogue and collaboration with the followers of other religions, carried out with prudence and love and in witness to the Christian faith and life, they recognise, preserve and promote the good things, spiritual and moral, as well as the socio-cultural values among these men,’’ he said.
The Church, confronted with the challenge of traditional cultures and the shock of modern ones, is engaged without conditions or complacency, in a dialogue fully open to the best demands of the cultures of our times: unity and plurality, particularity and universality, truth and modernity, beauty and practicality. Cardinal Poupard said that various Holy Fathers took various steps towards this end and that in March 2006, Pope Benedict XVI, appointed him also as the president of the Pontifical Council for Inter-religious Dialogue, ‘’in order to favour a more intense dialogue between men of culture and exponents of various religions.’’
Quoting Pope Benedict XVI, Cardinal Poupard said, ‘’ Today, the Church is called to embrace new challenges and be ready to enter into dialogue with different cultures and religions, seeking with every person of good will to build peaceful coexistence between peoples.’’ Cardinal Poupard said his visit to Goa was to promote a sincere and authentic intercultural and inter-religious dialogue carried out in mutual respect, openness and above all charity. Earlier in his welcome speech, the Archbishop of Goa, Rev Ferrao described the Art Gallery as “a splendid and unique treasure of contemporary Christian Art,’’ made up mostly of contributions from non-Christian artists from India and abroad.
Rev Ferrao said he looked forward to seeing the gallery turn into a ‘’place of dynamic inter-cultural and inter-religious dialogue, through the medium of the visual arts, over one single subject: Christ.