An Interfaith Experience of Dialogue as Love in Action, Silence, and Harmony

Sebastiano D'Ambra

in Christian Lives Given to the Study of Islam

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print November 2012 | ISBN: 9780823243198
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780823243235 | DOI:
An Interfaith Experience of Dialogue as Love in Action, Silence, and Harmony

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For D’Ambra, a priest of the Pontificio Istituto Missioni Estere, sent from his native Italy to the Zamboang Peninsula in the Philippines, the practice of sharing a simple life and facing danger alongside Muslim villagers preceded the study of Islam at PISAI. In a time of rebellion and its repression his hut called “Muslim-Christian Brotherhood” was the meeting place. The spiritual and experiential dimensions of encountering “the God of dialogue” are recounted as preparation for the work of mediation with the rebel fighters, who pledged to protect their negotiator with their lives. After surviving the first assassination attempt and an exile for Islamic studies, he went back to the Philippines with the vision of Silsilah – all sharing one genealogical tree under God, where the mission was supported by the legendary Bishop Tudtud. A kidnapping threat and further assassination attempt led to a second three-year exile in Italy before returning to set up formal Christian-Muslim dialogue and establishing an ashram dedicated to a deeper encounter through silent prayer. From the Silsilah root have sprung many initiatives to bring Muslim and Christian women and men together.

Keywords: D’Ambra; Pontificio Istituto Missioni Estere; Italy; Philippines; PISAI; Silsilah; Tudtud; Christian-Muslim

Chapter.  5376 words. 

Subjects: Islam

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