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Islamochristiana 42: Mercy

2016 will be remembered, in the history of the Catholic Church, as the year of the ‘Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy’. We know well that mercy is the true beating heart, both in Christianity and in Islam. For this reason, PISAI organised an international conference during the ‘Jubilee of Mercy’ entitled ‘Raḥma. Muslim and Christian Studies in Mercy’ (13-15 October 2016). The proceedings of this interesting and well-attended conference will appear in the course of 2017 in the series Studi arabo-islamici del PISAI, but Islamochristiana desires to present some of these in advance, with the choice of five interventions, by which it is possible for the reader to perceive the quality of the whole conference.

The first is the keynote address of Cardinal Walter Kasper, whose studies have helped to stimulate the reflection of Pope Francis. His sharp and synthetical address presents the Christian biblical and theological data, but does not hesitate to launch some provocative challenges into the Muslim camp. As a ‘pendant’, we decided to include the article by Ramon Harvey on the revelation of mercy in the Muslim theological vision. Then follow the two great interventions of Angelika Neuwirth and Mustansir Mir. Professor Neuwirth, from Berlin, analyses with great precision the meanings of mercy and their various expressions in the Qur’an, while Pakistani-American professor Mir analyses, the same concept, also in the Qur’an but from a different and complementary angle. Finally, the contribution of Dirk Ansorge on a difficult and complex theme: mercy as a theological problem, especially in relation to justice. But the richness of this issue of Islamochristiana also appears in the series of studies that follow the group of contributions on mercy. Two articles reflect on Muslim-Christian relations in history: Marek Nasiłowski with Diego R. Sarrió Cucarella and Jaume Flaquer. Some current issues emerge in four articles; Maurice Borrmans, Tobias Specker, Bishop Jean-Marc Aveline; Sami Riahi translates into Arabic an important article by Gideon Libson on custom as a source of Muslim law. Finally, as a concrete experience of dialogue in life, Ignazio De Francesco illustrates an experience of very good conduct in the Dozza prison in Bologna. The numerous reviews and presentations of books, as well as the Notes & documents concerned with Islam and Islamic-Christian relations complete this issue.

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L’année 2016 sera retenue dans l’histoire de l’Eglise catholique comme celle du “Jubilée extraordinaire de la Miséricorde”. Nous savons bien que la miséricorde est au cœur tant du christianisme que de l’islam. Voilà pourquoi, le PISAI a organisé un colloque international durant ce jubilée (13-15 octobre 2016) intitulé “Raḥma. Muslim and Christian Studies in Mercy”. Les actes de ce colloque très suivi seront publiés au cours de 2017 dans la collection Studi arabo-islamici del PISAI, mais Islamochristiana voudrait anticiper sur cette publication, en présentant cinq interventions qui témoigneront auprès des lecteurs de la qualité de ce colloque.

La première contribution est celle du Cardinal Walter Kasper qui, grâce à sa recherche, avait stimulé la réflexion du Pape François. Son intervention pertinente et synthétique présente les données biblico-théologiques chrétiennes, mais n’hésite pas à provoquer aussi la partie musulmane. Pour faire pendant, nous avons inséré l’article de Ramon Harvey sur la révélation de la miséricorde dans la vision théologique musulmane. Viennent ensuite les deux grandes interventions de Angelika Neuwirth et de Mustansir Mir. La professeure berlinoise analyse avec précision les sens de la miséricorde et ses expressions dans le Coran et le professeur pakistano-américain analyse, toujours dans le Coran, le même concept sous un angle différent et complémentaire. Enfin, nous avons la contribution de Dirk Ansorge sur un thème difficile et complexe, à savoir la miséricorde comme problème théologique, surtout en relation avec la justice. La richesse de ce numéro d’Islamochristiana se manifeste encore dans la série des études qui suivent l’ensemble des contributions sur la miséricorde. Deux articles sont des réflexions sur les rapports islamo-chrétiens dans l’histoire, l’un d’eux par Marek Nasiłowski avec Diego R. Sarrió Cucarella et l’autre par Jaume Flaquer. Quelques thèmes actuels se manifestent dans quatre autres articles : Maurice Borrmans, Tobias Specker, l’évêque Jean-Marc Aveline ; Sami Riahi traduit en arabe un article important de Gideon Libson sur la coutume comme source de la législation musulmane. Enfin, comme expérience concrète du dialogue dans la vie, Ignazio De Francesco retrace une belle expérience qui vient de se dérouler dans la prison Dozza de Bologne. Les nombreuses recensions, les présentations de livres et les riches notes et documents relatifs à l’islam et aux rapports islamo-chrétiens complètent ce numéro.

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