Catholic University of Leuven establishes Fethullah Gülen Chair

Officials from the Catholic University of Leuven have established a chair named after Turkish scholar Fethullah Gülen
Officials from the Catholic University of Leuven have established a chair named after Turkish scholar Fethullah Gülen


Date posted: December 9, 2010

HATİCE AVCI, LEUVEN

A chair named after the well-respected Turkish scholar Fethullah Gülen has been established at one of Belgium’s most prestigious Catholic universities, the Catholic University of Leuven, with university officials saying it is a source of pleasure for them to have a chair named after Gülen.

The Fethullah Gülen Chair for Intercultural Studies was established with the efforts of the Brussels-based Intercultural Dialogue Platform (IDP), whose honorary chairman is Gülen. An inauguration ceremony was held on Monday at the university. As part of an agreement signed between the IDP and the university, the chair will carry out academic research and organize conferences for five years.

Social and Cultural Anthropology Professor Johan Leman, who will be the chair holder, and university Rector Mark Waer expressed pleasure to host the chair. In a statement he released on the occasion of the establishment of the chair, Leman said that as an intellectual and spiritual leader, Gülen has encouraged his Muslim fellows to take initiatives to build bridges, particularly between Islam and modernity, science and spirituality, and reason and faith.

Noting that he has motivated millions to engage and invest in sustaining peace and improving community relations through nondenominational education and intercultural dialogue, Leman said Gülen’s recognition of democracy as the only viable political system of governance and his emphasis on diversity, equal access to human rights, freedom of belief for all, loyalty to the law of the land and the non-instrumentalization of religion in politics make his message one of the most promising calls for the future of relations between the West and the Muslim community.

“His message now has a growing influence, particularly among the second-generation migrant-origin citizens of Europe. It is our hope that this chair, inspired by this message, will contribute to the bridge-building process through promoting intercultural understanding and stimulating research on relations between Muslim communities and the wider society in Belgium and Europe,” he said. Gülen is a Turkish Islamic scholar well known for his teachings promoting mutual understanding and tolerance between cultures. One of the world’s most influential Islamic scholars, Gülen came out at the top of the list of “The World’s Top 20 Public Intellectuals” by the magazines Foreign Policy and Prospect in 2008. Now residing in the US, Gülen has pioneered educational activities in a number of countries along with efforts to promote intercultural and interfaith activities around the world. He has written nearly 50 books in Turkish, some of which have been translated into several languages.

IDP Chairman Şerafettin Pektaş told Today’s Zaman that they see the establishment of the chair as the extension of their 10 years of work in Brussels.

Waer said the university gives the Muslim world the message that the university is open to “academic dialogue with the Muslim world.” Stating that they show that Muslims and Catholics can work together in academia, he said this message should not be played down. Addressing claims that Gülen and his followers have a secret agenda, Waer said they pay no attention to this. Professor Leman also said these claims are groundless and exaggerated. Stating that they have received “warnings” from groups in Turkey when they announced that they would establish the Gülen chair, Leman said he has been in contact with members of the Gülen movement for three years and had never encountered a secret agenda.

 

Source: Today's Zaman , 09 December 2010


Related News

Peace Islands Institute Annual Ramadan Dinner

New Jersey Bergen Sheriff Michael Saudino had been fasting for the first time when attended the iftar dinner by the Peace Islands Institute (PII). At the gathering with the theme “Understanding hunger and poverty by fasting.” One of the attendees US Attorney Paul Fishman said, “PII serves a significant cause regarding unity and cohesion in the society with its cultural and religious activities.”

Who wants peace?

ORHAN MİROĞLU The Hizmet movement also wants peace. And peace is of course desired by the movement’s leader, Fethullah Gülen, who has worked for so many years to see the brotherhood between Turks and Kurds improved. Words of sincerity and courage spoken by Gülen should stand as examples for the leaders of our political parties. […]

Gulen factor in Turkey’s turmoil

Gulen Movement is a unique case of global social innovation based on the sanctity of education and inter-faith dialogue in a number of respects.

Peace Islands Institute Annual Gala 2014

On November 20, 2014 Peace Islands Institute hosted an audience of 250 people at its Annual Gala at The Plaza Hotel in New York City. The gala featured a silent auction, live appeal, dinner and exciting live performances.

Fethullah Gulen: I consider the coup attempt as a serious “terror coup”

The events of that night [the coup attempt] could be called as a serious terror coup. I categorically reject such accusations. The claim that I convinced the 8th biggest army in the world from 6000 miles away against its own government is an incredible slander. I would like those who are responsible for this coup attempt, regardless of their identities, to receive the punishment they deserve after a fair trial.

Hong Kong Anatolia Cultural & Dialogue Centre, Photography Competition 2015

Harmony of Hong Kong in Your Frame Photo Contest is open to ALL photographers at least 18 years of age, except members and staff of Anatolia Cultural & Dialogue Centre and their immediate families. The contest is open to all Hong Kong residents regardless of citizenship, so long as the laws of their jurisdiction allow participation.

Latest News

This notable Pocono resident has been living here in exile since 1999

Logistics companies seized over Gülen links sold in fast-track auction

That is Why the Turkish Government could Pay 1 Billion Euros

ECtHR rules Bulgaria violated rights of Turkish journalist who was deported despite seeking asylum

Fethullah Gülen’s Message of Condolences in the Wake of the Western European Floods

Pregnant woman kept in prison for 4 months over Gülen links despite regulations

Normalization of Abduction, Torture, and Death in Erdogan’s Turkey

Turkey’s Maarif Foundation illegally seized German-run school in Ethiopia, says manager

Failed 2016 coup was gov’t plot to purge Gülenists from state bodies, journalist claims

In Case You Missed It

‘Let my husband go to another country, just not Turkey’

The Gülen Factor: Erdogan, the Coup, and the United States

Turkish Gov’t Seizes 965 Gülen Movement Affiliated Firms With $11.3 Billion Worth

International Conference on Hizmet Movement in Taiwan

A new book by Esposito and Yavuz on ‘The Gülen Movement’

Purge In Turkey Worries Kansas City Emigres

TUSKON foreign trade summit opens Central Asia’s doors

Copyright 2021 Hizmet News