Pope Francis and Sheik Ahmad el-Tayeb, grand imam of Egypt's al-Azhar mosque and university, sign documents during an interreligious meeting at the Founder's Memorial in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, Feb. 4, 2019. (CNS/Paul Haring)
The declaration signed by Pope Francis and Sheik Ahmad el-Tayeb, the grand imam of al-Azhar, during the pope's trip to the United Arab Emirates "is a clarion call for robust dialogue that leads to peace," said the Catholic chairman of the National Catholic-Muslim Dialogue and the chairman of the U.S. bishops' Committee on Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs.
They also urged religious and political leaders to "bring an end to wars, conflicts, environmental decay and the moral and cultural decline that the world is presently experiencing."
But the centerpiece of the declaration was a call on Christians and Muslims to recognize and respect one another and work together for the good of humanity.
Commenting on the document Feb. 8, Cupich and Bambera urged "all people of goodwill, especially leaders of nations and religious groups," to read and study the declaration "in the hope that it might serve as a resource to overcome division through a renewed commitment to dialogue and the establishment of goodwill."