Today, the European Union Office of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints hosts an event entitled European Union, United Kingdom, and Commonwealth: Cooperation in the Promotion of Freedom of Religion or Belief in the Renaissance Brussels Hotel, Belgium. The host’s description of the event follows:
We are proud to host an outstanding event on Article 18 UDHR from a truly international perspective.
We will be honoured to hear from our keynote speaker, Dr. Ján Figel’, Special Envoy for the promotion of freedom of religion or belief (‘FoRB’) outside the European Union. His perspective on #FoRB is informed by his rich international experience in his current role as well as by his previous experience within the #EU.
Dr. Figel’ will be joined by a panel chaired by Mr. Andrew Lewer, Member of the European Parliament and Member of the European Parliament Intergroup on FoRB & Religious Tolerance. Speakers with international perspectives from the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth will include: Mr. David Rutley,Member of the United Kingdom Parliament for Macclesfield and Member of the UK All-Party Parliamentary Group on FoRB (tbc); Mr. Simon McCrossan, barrister and Head of Policy with the United Kingdom Evangelical Alliance; Professor Neville Rochow SC, Government Relations Representative in our EU Office, a barrister from Australia with wide-ranging experience in FoRB in that country prior to joining us here in the EU; Professor Pasquale Annichino, Fellow Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies, European University Institute, and Member of the Italian Council for the relationships with Muslim Communities at the Italian Ministry of Interior.
Invitations to actively participate have been extended also to representatives of the European External Action Service and Members of the European Parliament, diplomats and Brussels-based ambassadors from Commonwealth countries. Updates on the program will be posted on our event page.
In February, Palgrave Macmillan will release Religious Minorities in Turkey: Alevi, Armenians, and Syriacs and the Struggle to Desecuritize Religious Freedom by Mehmet Bardakci (Yeni Yüzyıl University), Annette Freyberg-Inan (University of Amsterdam), Christoph Giesel (University of Jena), and Olaf Leisse (Friedrich Schiller University Jena). The publisher’s description follows:
This book considers the key issue of Turkey’s treatment of minorities in relation to its complex paths of both European integration and domestic and international reorientation. The expectations of Turkey’s EU and other international counterparts, as well as important domestic demands, have pushed Turkey to broaden the rights of religious and other minorities. More recently a turn towards autocratic government is rolling back some earlier achievements. This book shows how these broader processes affect the lives of three important religious groups in Turkey: the Alevi as a large Muslim community and the Christian communities of Armenians and Syriacs. Drawing on a wealth of original data and extensive fieldwork, the authors compare and explain improvements, set-backs, and lingering concerns for Turkey’s religious minorities and identify important challenges for Turkey’s future democratic development and European path. The book will appeal to students and scholars in the fields of minority politics, contemporary Turkish politics, and religion and politics.
In March, Westminster John Knox Press will release Eleanor: A Spiritual Biography by Harold Ivan Smith (Carondolet Medical Institute). The publisher’s description follows:
More than fifty years after her death, Eleanor Roosevelt is remembered as a formidable first lady and tireless social activist. Often overlooked, however, is her deep and inclusive spirituality. Her personal faith was shaped by reading the New Testament in her youth, giving her a Jesus-centered spirituality that fueled her commitment to civil rights, women’s rights, and the rights of all “little people” marginalized in American society.
She took seriously Jesus’ words and despite her life of privilege, she made the needs of those on the margins her priority. Eleanor: A Spiritual Biography provides insight into one of America’s most famous women, particularly the spiritual influences that made her so active in social justice issues.
In February, Routledge will release Religion, Migration, and Mobility: The Brazilian Experience edited by Cristina Maria de Castro (Federal University of Minas Gerais) and Andrew Dawson (Lancaster University). The publisher’s description follows:
Focusing on migration and mobility, this edited collection examines the religious landscape of Brazil as populated and shaped by transnational flows and domestic migratory movements. Bringing together interdisciplinary perspectives on migration and religion, this book argues that Brazil’s diverse religious landscape must be understood within a dynamic global context. From southern to northern Europe, through Africa, Japan and the Middle East, to a host of Latin American countries, Brazilian society has been influenced by immigrant communities accompanied by a range of beliefs and rituals drawn from established ‘world’ religions as well as alternative religio-spiritual movements. Consequently, the formation and profile of ‘homegrown’ religious communities such as Santo Daime, the Dawn Valley and Umbanda can only be fully understood against the broader backdrop of migration.
Contributors draw on the case of Brazil to develop frameworks for understanding the interface of religion and migration, asking questions that include: How do the processes and forces of re-territorialization play out among post-migratory communities? In what ways are the post-transitional dynamics of migration enacted and reframed by different generations of migrants? How are the religious symbols and ritual practices of particular worldviews and traditions appropriated and re-interpreted by migrant communities? What role does religion play in facilitating or impeding post-migratory settlement? Religion, Migration and Mobility engages these questions by drawing on a range of different traditions and research methods. As such, this book will be of keen interest to scholars working across the fields of religious studies, anthropology, cultural studies and sociology.