The COVID-19 Crisis: Faith Engagement Between Peace and Conflict in Asia

May 21, 2020
9:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. EDT
Location: Online Zoom Webinar

Each country faces different challenges as they confront the double crisis of COVID-19 infection and related economic and social shocks. In several East Asian countries this comes on top of tensions linked to rising nationalism and interreligious and interethnic divides. Religious beliefs and institutions are deeply engaged in supporting those directly affected by the pandemic, and in looking ahead towards recovery and promoting reforms as lessons from the crisis are learned.

Somboon Chungprampree (Khun Moo) is a Thai social activist working for peace and justice in Asia and supporting far-reaching religious and development networks, including by serving as executive secretary of the International Network of Engaged Buddhists (INEB). His colleague, K. V. Soon Vidyananda (Vidya), entrepreneur and Buddhist leader, and Khun Moo joined Berkley Center Senior Fellow Katherine Marshall in conversation to reflect on who is most vulnerable and what mechanisms are available, formal and informal, to support them. This webinar explored the responses of religious communities in different countries, including how various communities have engaged with government authorities, the role of interreligious approaches, whether communities are responding with violence or peace, and how the politics and ethics of environmental challenges are affected by the crisis.

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