Catholic World News

Dalai Lama not invited to Assisi prayer meeting

September 09, 2016

The Dalai Lama has not been invited to participate in the inter-religious prayer meeting that will take place at Assisi on September 20, the AsiaNews service has learned.

The Dalai Lama was prominently involved in the original Assisi prayer meeting, called by St. John Paul II in 1986, pictures of the even show him standing beside the Polish Pontiff. But an aide told AsiaNews that the Dalai Lama has not received an invitation to this year's service, which will mark the 30th anniversary of that first event.

It is well known that the Chinese government strenuously objects to public recognition of the Tibetan spiritual leader; it is possible that the Vatican, which is now engaged in delicate negotiations with the Chinese regime, wished to avoid an appearance that could complicate relations between Beijing and Rome. 

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  • Posted by: Caritas - Sep. 10, 2016 10:19 PM ET USA

    I wouldn't be too quick to judge the Holy Father, there may be other reasons for not inviting the Dalai Lama.

  • Posted by: Bveritas2322 - Sep. 10, 2016 4:01 PM ET USA

    Not that "interfaith" prayer meetings are such a wonderful thing. But the Vatican bowing down to the mass murdering Chinese government is another sign of a crumbling Church under Francis' leadership.

  • Posted by: unum - Sep. 10, 2016 12:31 PM ET USA

    It is hard to believe that the Vatican would have deliberately skipped the Dalai Lama's 30th anniversary invitation to Assisi. St. Francis would have made sure he received one.

  • Posted by: jeremiahjj - Sep. 10, 2016 9:24 AM ET USA

    So to keep from offending the Chinese, who serve no god, we offend the Dalai Lama and everyone else who serves God, is that right? That must communicate a real message to the Chinese people -- not to mention God himself