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Inter-Religious Work

by Gerry Lynch last modified 01 Jun, 2017 08:21 PM

The Diocese works to promote good relations and deeper understanding between Christians and people of other faiths


“In science or politics, people seek to persuade others of their point of view and we should also be ready to speak about the truth of the Gospel. We must remember at the same time that people of other faiths are also loved by God, and can be touched by Him when they pray.

“Inter-religious work is just as important in areas like this where minority faiths are small. Stereotypes arise more easily because people rarely meet those of other faiths.” - Canon Guy Wilkinson

The Diocese has relatively small communities belonging to faiths other than Christianity, although there is a well established Jewish community in the Greater Bournemouth-Poole area, and small communities of Muslims in several of the larger towns, most notably in Trowbridge, Poole, and Salisbury. The neopagan movement in larger in Wiltshire than almost anywhere else in the country. There are individuals belonging to all major world faiths scattered across the Diocese.

Bishop Nicholas regularly writes to leaders of other religions in the Diocese around major festivals, to extend good wishes and recognise their contribution to the common good.


Updated Listing The Great Get Together is encouraging people of different religions to hold street parties between 16-18 June in honour of Jo Cox. Read more here.

Updated Listing 27 May 2017
Bishop Nicholas sent Ramadan greetings to Muslim communities in the Diocese, also calling for Muslims to extend their Iftar hospitality as widely as possible, and for Christians to accept such hospitality and reach out in friendship to their Muslim neighbours.

Updated Listing 23 May 2017
Bishop Nicholas issued a joint statement with leaders of the Muslim community
in Salisbury after the terrorist attack at the Manchester Arena.


The Church Urban Fund Near Neighbours programme seeks to bring people together who are near neighbours in communities that are religiously and ethnically diverse, so that they can get to know each other better, build relationships of trust, and collaborate together on initiatives that improve the local community they live in. Learn more at

The Church of England Presence & Engagement programme helps parishes be a truly national Church in areas of high religious diversity, following report to General Synod Presence and Engagement: the churches' task in a multi Faith society. It encourages and supports the mission and ministry of parishes and other Anglican communities in multi-religious contexts, supported by the Church of England's national Adviser on Inter Faith relations.

The BBC website has a useful introductory guide to the beliefs of a wide variety of religions - visit it here.

Porvoo Guidelines: inter-religious encounter in churches of the Porvoo Communion
The Porvoo Communion draws together Anglican churches from Britain and Ireland with Lutheran churches from Scandinavia and the Baltic. These guidelines emerged from a consultation held in Oslo in December 2003. They have no official status, but offer some practical pointers on pastoral issues.

Inter Faith Marriage Guidelines: advice from a Christian perspective.

Network for Inter Faith Concerns (NIFCON) of the Anglican Communion.

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