The blessing of the food by eleven representatives of the world's major religions came together for a day of peace, sharing and discussion. Typical dishes were shared from 68 countries, including Palestine and Israel, at the signing of the Milan Charter and with the blessing of the "religion friendly" rice dish. Here's the story in pictures of the day "food of the spirit "in Expo Milano 2015.
Presented with dishes brought from 68 countries participating in Expo Milano 2015, representatives of different religions each gave an expression of thanks, prayer and gratitude for what was about to be eaten. After the blessings each religious leader signed the Milan Charter and everyone was able to enjoy the food that had been blessed.
It is the first time that so many religions have come together to perform a blessing
68 Countries and five civil society organizations actively participated in the occasion, wearing traditional dress and bringing a representative dish. Both Israel and Palestine took part. The event was opened with a welcoming speech by the Minister of Agriculture, Food and Forestry, Maurizio Martina and Commissioner of the Government of Italy for Expo Milano 2015, Giuseppe Sala.
The representatives of the main religions and rice as a “religion-friendly" food
The meeting was conceived and moderated by the editor-in-chef of ExpoNet and Scientific Director of LifeGate, Simone Molteni. Participants included the Vice President of the Italian Hindu Union Sanatana, Dharma Svamini Hamsananda Ghiri; Rabbi of the Jewish Community of Milan, Elia Richetti; the Abbot of the Zen Monastery "The Circle", Carlo Tetsugen Serra; the Lama of the Tibetan Studies Center "Mandala", Paljin Tulku Rinpoche; the Pastor of the Evangelical Methodist Church, Dorothée Mack; the Episcopal Vicar of the Catholic archdiocese of Milan, Luca Bressan; the Archimandrite of the Orthodox Church of Romania, Traian Valdman; the pastor of the Waldensian Evangelical Church, Giuseppe Platone; the Chairman of the Board of Christian Churches of Milan, Piergiorgio Acquaviva;Vice President of Coreis (the Italian Islamic Religious Community), Yahya Pallavicini and the President of the House of Muslim Culture in Milan, Mahmoud Asfa.
Chef Ambassador of Expo Milano 2015, Pietro Leemann prepared a dish with vegetarian, kosher and halal ingredients so as to be in harmony with the teachings of all religions represented. The slightly spicy dish was made with fragrant basmati rice with saffron, cabbage and a vegan sauce made of peppers.
For maximum appeal and to include also non-believers there was a secular blessing read in three languages (Italian, English and French) by three children - a Ukrainian boy, an Italian-Croatian girl and an Egyptian boy. This secular blessing had been,shared with Civil Society Participants of Expo, from Cascina Triulza and LabE from the Fondazione Feltrinelli, which highlighted all aspects of the Universal theme dear to Milan: sustainability, the fight against food waste and respect for food and all living beings. At the end of proceedings, all the visitors were able to enjoy the food that had been blessed.