Inspired by the Olympic Torch of Athens, FRH has launched the “Torch of Heritage and Culture” initiative, to raise awareness and safeguard the importance of Europe’s rich religious heritage. The FRH Torch is a memory treasure box, containing personal letters from prominent members of the international community but also from European citizens themselves. These letters, contributed during an official Torch ceremony held at various events all over Europe, describe personal memories and stories relating to religious heritage.
WHEN? Launched on 8 January in Leeuwarden, The Netherlands, the Torch will travel Europe until 11 October 2018, finishing its journey at the FRH Conference in Paris.
WHERE? The FRH Torch will be hosted at a number of events all over Europe. In order to learn more about its location, discover the route of the Torch.
HOW? The FRH Torch is a treasure box full of personal stories related to religious heritage, from politicians, artists, scientists, European citizens, as well as refugees.
But what is FRH Torch?
The FRH Torch of Heritage and Culture is a metaphor, it is a well of memories, which combined are a testimony to the universal nature of European culture. The FRH Torch is a memory treasure box, containing personal, often handwritten letters from prominent members of the international community but also from European citizens themselves. These letters, contributed during an official Torch ceremony held at various events all over Europe, describe personal memories and stories relating to religious heritage.
Afterwards we wandered around the church grounds and read the names and dates upon the gravestones. At the back a lovely view opens up onto fields and pastures. The church sits on a hillock, or wierden, which granted us this view. […] One cannot simply do with heritage what one wants. Making use of local religious heritage is not the same as borrowing from other cultures. Because the churches bind heritage materially to a place, they demand a word in any discussion about the meaning of religion.
By Todd H. Weir, Director, Centre for Religion and Heritage, University of Groningen
After all this we went back to Sadad, to find everything destroyed and vandalized, that did not break it or its residents, people stood by, helped and supported each other and within three months Sadad was standing again, and celebrated Christmas and New Year’s with tears and smiles and a great intention to rebuild everything the terrorism has desecrated.
By Anas Hannoun, musician, Syrian refugee
Who can contribute?
Everyone! FRH has invited prominent politicians, artists, professors and spiritual leaders to participate in this initiative. Among the first contributors were the Deputy Minister of Culture of the Province of Friesland Johannes Kramer, Professor Todd Weir, University of Groningen, Reverend Edna Zwerver and Anas Hannoun, musician and Syrian refugee.
However, we welcome all contributors. Every memory is equally important, as they all add up to the sense of community built around religious heritage. We would be very happy to receive your own story and to publish it on our website. To submit your letter, click here.
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