URI Europe took part at the International Seminar on Science and Religion cooperation for Environmental Care (ISSREC)

inspired by the Pope Francis Encyclical Laudato si’


In the second half of June 2016 took place an International Seminar on Science and Religion cooperation for Enviornmental Care at Torreciudad Shrine, Spain.

ISSREC organized by the Environmental Ethics chair of University of Alcalá, the Tatiana Perez de Guzman el Bueno Foundation and the Social Promotion of Culture Foundation, aimed to foster the dialogue between scientists, theologians and religious leaders to promote a closer cooperation between sciences and religious traditions for environmental conservation. The seminar was attended by a group of environmental scientists, theologians, and religious leaders of major spiritual traditions. Among them was Rev. Hierodeacon Petar Gramatikov, URI Europe Global Council Trustee and Vice-President of BRIDGES CC.


Father Petar


Centered on the Pope Francis’s encyclical Laudato si

And the opportunities it opens to foster collaboration of world major religious traditions to mitigate environmental problems. Seventeen scientists, theologians and religious leaders from thirteen different countries and eight religious traditions participated in the seminar. 

Pope Francis sent a message to participants wishing the seminar “serve to promote scientific and interreligious dialogue for care of our common home and encourage joint efforts to promote consciousness with greater solidarity for the good of each and every human being.”

At the closing of the seminar, all participants planted an olive tree at the Shrine of Torreciudad, as a natural symbol of the commitment of the various religious traditions and the scientific community for environmental conservation.


A result of the working discussions

The Torreciudad declaration  was prodused and it is ready in the web page of the ISSREC at:



«The majority of people living on our planet profess to be believers. This should spur religions to dialogue among themselves for the sake of protecting nature, defending the poor, and building networks of respect and fraternity. Dialogue among the various sciences is likewise needed, since each can tend to become enclosed in its own language, while specialization leads to a certain isolation and the absolutization of its own field of knowledge. This prevents us from confronting environmental problems effectively (…) The gravity of the ecological crisis demands that we all look to the common good, embarking on a path of dialogue which demands patience, self-discipline and generosity, always keeping in mind that “realities are greater than ideas”»
(Pope Francis, Laudato si, n. 201)