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December 3, 2008

Peace through Religious Harmony – Religious Leaders’ National Conference held on 25th November, 2008 at BMICH



Sarvodaya Shanthi Sena Sansadaya successfully launched its Religious Leaders National Conference at BMICH in the presence of a large gathering of religious leaders who belongs to all religions of Sri Lanka. The distinguished invitees who were present at the occasion were Most Venerable Buddhist Maha Sangha including Venerable Tep Wong, the Chief Incumbent of Cambodia, Venerable Kotugoda Dammawasa Thero, Venerable Bopitiya Wanshananda Thero, Venerable Iththapana Dammalankara Thero, Venerable Professor Bellanwila Wimalarathana Thero, Venerable Maduluwawa Sobitha Thero; Most Reverend Fathers and Brothers of Catholic and other Christian Denominations including Rev.Marcus Ferdinand and Rev.Krishantha Mendis; Most Reverend Heads of Hindu and Islamic Religions including Venerable Kuhanandan Sharma and Venerable Alhaj S. Niyas Mohammad; William Wendly, the General Secretary of Religions for Peace World Council and Dr. A. T. Ariyaratne, the founder President of Sarvodaya Shramadana Movement.

The event has been organized by Sarvodaya Shanthi Sena Sansadaya as the pinnacle of a series of inter-religious conferences held at 15 administrative districts of Sri Lanka under the theme Peace through Co-existence with courtesy of Norwegian Church Aid (NCA). The event also marked the 30 years of service of Sarvodaya Shanthi Sena Sansadaya and it has been organized in parallel to 50 year celebrations of Sarvodaya Shramadana Movement.

The religious leaders invoked their blessings for the declaration of Sarvodaya for the nest 50 years and the services rendered by a number of religious leaders at district level who dedicated themselves towards religious and ethnic harmony were honoured at this occasion. 31 religious leaders received honors from Dr. A. T. Ariyaratne, the founder President of Sarvodaya Shramadana Movement in the event. The winners of the All Island Essay Competition conducted on the theme ‘To usher a Sri Lankan society without religious and ethnic divisions’ were awarded prices by Dr. Vinya Ariyaratne, the Executive Director of Sarvodaya Shramadana Movement. This competition was held under 2 categories of all island schools and universities.

At this occasion the founder President of Sarvodaya Shramadana Movement Dr. A. T. Ariyaratne was awarded a special honor by the Religions for Peace World Council for his remarkable contribution for peace in Sri Lanka.

Sarvodaya Shramadana Movement for the People in Need.