Report

International Online Forum

14th Ecumenical Social Week

«Promoting the Common Good: Towards the Sustainable Development of Society»

October 5-9, 2021, Lviv

 

Within 5 days, October 5-9, the 14th Ecumenical Social Week (ESW), dedicated to the issue of the sustainable development, was being held in Lviv. ESW united the attendees from various spheres: educators, scholars, representatives of religious, non-governmental, state organizations, journalists, businessmen and experts in Environmental Studies, Economy, Interreligious and Interdenominational dialogue. The International Forum was held in a hybrid format. The majority of attendees joined the events via ZOOM, YouTube andFacebook platforms, some speakers, attendees and moderators attended the Forum offline in Lviv.

The events were held in the Ukrainian Language, some of them simultaneously interpreted into English.

 

Over 100 speakers and moderators, from Ukraine and abroad, joined the events. In general more than 500 persons from 16 countries (Ukraine, Belgium, Italy, England, Vatican, Greece, the USA, Canada, Austria, France, Slovakia, Poland, Spain, Kenya, Switzerland and Germany) participated in the discussions. Besides, the communities of the universities and seminaries from Lviv, Kyiv, Ivano-Frankivsk, Khmelnytskyy, Odesa, Ternopil, Chernivtsi and others also joined the events.

During the Forum, attendees discussed the reinterpretation of the sustainable development goals in the light of the modern challenges, pandemic, migration processes, inclusion, ecology, economy and ecumenism. The speakers focused on the environmental issues: conservation of forest resources, climate change and adaptation of cities to them, conservation of marine and terrestrial ecosystems, biodiversity, fossil fuel abandonment. Another block included the discussion of the SDGs through the prism of Religious Studies and ecumenical dialogue. Besides, businessmen shared their thoughts regarding the responsibility of business in the process of sustainable development and in the context of the European Green deal, they were inspired by the figure of Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytskyi as a promoter of sustainable development. The significant part of ESW is a meeting of the Ukrainian Christian Academic Society, we had three of them within the Forum. Theologians, scholars and historians discussed the joint history of martyrdom, Soviet persecution and a common perception of justice, human rights, freedom and the environment. The participants and foreign experts also discussed the issues of peace and inclusion.

The interdisciplinary approach of the Forum set the opportunity for all the attendees of various backgrounds to exchange experience and the vision of the society development, focusing on shared values. We studied various cases and learnt about the existing issues, urgent not only in the Ukrainian context, but all over the world. The Forum discussions become to a certain extent a tool for compiling an agenda of urgent issues and an incentive to address them through joint efforts. During the Forum, the priority of cooperation between various social figures was repeatedly emphasized.

Cardinal Michael Czerny participation in the Forum events confirmed the special anxiety of Vatican to Ukraine and our problems. Once again, the participation of religious figures helps us to comprehend how should the Churches be acting today for the sustainable development, in the light of the Social Doctrine. It is noteworthy that such events become an opportunity to discover the potential of various organizations and find a partner in a common case.

During ESW, the Forum press-center was working on wide spreading of the information about the ideas, outlined by the Social Week attendees. The above-mentioned Cardinal Michael Czerny, exclusively for the Forum, gave a couple of detailed interviews in the Ukrainian media and involved his press service to promote ESW (media report is attached).

Successful promotion campaign made it possible to involve various target audiences; priests, public activists, businessmen, mass media, students, state authorities scholars and professors and others.

For the second year in a row, the Forum is held online, that gives an opportunity to involve people form various cities of Ukraine and abroad. Though it is a technical challenge as well, as we are dependent on the internet quality of the participants, electricity supply. During ESW, one of the events was held with no internet and no electricity in the premises, where we had broadcasting. Owing to the professionalism of the contractors who technically supported the event, we managed to hold this event with simultaneous interpreting and ZOOM, YouTube andFacebook broadcasting.

In future we are planning to continue to conduct the ESW in a hybrid format, regardless of the pandemic, with a stress on discussions and interdisciplinarity.

 

Organizers:

Institute of Ecumenical Studies UCU, Ukrainian Catholic University (UCU)Konrad-Adenauer Stiftung in Ukraine.

In cooperation with Lviv City Council.

The Ukrainian Christian Academic Society Partner: Renovabis

With an expert support of:

1. Ecology Department of Lviv City Council.

2. NGO Center for Ecological Theology and Sustainable Development.

3. UCU Institute of Religion and Society .

5. UCU Lviv Business School.

7. Ecology Bureau of UGCC.

8. International Charity Organization «EnvironmentPeopleLaw».

9. UCU Alumni Association.

10. «Emmaus» Center for Support of Persons with Special Needs.

11. WWF in Ukraine.

12. Laudato Si’ Movement.

 

Media-partners:

1. RISU (Religious-Informational Service of Ukraine)

2. Religious internet resource «The Spiritual Greatness of Lviv»

3. «Tvoe Misto» Media-hub

4. The Network of Catholic Radio stations    «Maria» Radio

5. «Espresso» Website

6. «VoskresinniaZhyve Radio» Radio

7. «DyvenSvit» Internet resource

8. «Duzhe» Radio

9. UA. Ukrainian Radio

10. Credo Internet resource

11. Lviv Analytical Internet EditionZaxid.net

12. Internet-Edition «Leopolis News»

13.«Radio «Nezalezhnist»

14. Internet-newspaper «Vholos»

15. MoeMisto Poster of Lviv .