Archbishop Anastasios of Tirana, Durrës and All Albania was honored with the Klaus Hemmerle 2020 Prize in Germany for his contribution to interreligious efforts for peace and harmony.
During an ecumenical ceremony attended by representatives of the Focolare community and by Cardinal Kurt Koch, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, Archbishop Anastasios accepted the award on 14 February at the historic Aachen Cathedral in Germany.
This honor is awarded every two years by the Focolare movement to international personalities who have helped to reach and understand communities with different cultural and religious traditions.
The Laudatio was read by Cardinal Koch. In his thank-you speech, Archbishop Anastasios addressed the topic of “Peaceful coexistence in a multi-religious world.” Orthodox bishops of churches in Germany also attended the ceremony.
The award, established in 2002, is named for the spiritual “bridgeman” Klaus Hemmerle (1929-1994), who was bishop of Aachen (1975-1994) and a professor of the philosophy of religion.
The German translation of Archbishop Anastasios’s book “Mission to the Footsteps of Christ,” recently published with the care of the University of Fribourg, Switzerland, was available to more than 300 people who attended the event.