New book celebrates ten diverse faiths in the UAE

A new book, Celebrating Tolerance: Religious Diversity in the United Arab Emirates, was released today, which celebrates the 2019 Year of Tolerance in the UAE.


A new book, Celebrating Tolerance: Religious Diversity in the United Arab Emirates, was released today, which celebrates the 2019 Year of Tolerance in the UAE.

In the foreword to the book, His Excellency Sheikh Nahayan Mabarak Al Nahayan, the UAE’s Minister of Tolerance, says, “Because we live so harmoniously together in the United Arab Emirates, we may suspect that our various religions might all value tolerance. This anthology serves the essential purpose of converting our vague suspicion into fact. That wonderful fact of tolerance deserves the celebration accorded by this splendid book. To ensure that the celebration never ends, we must communicate and protect the fact by always acting in the spirit of the fact. Without our active attention, tolerance can swiftly vanish. Let the essays in this book inspire tolerance in perpetuity.”

Celebrating Tolerance, edited by the Reverend Canon Andrew Thompson and published by Motivate Media Group, serves as a compendium of the experiences of people from ten various faiths who coexist peacefully in the country. Representatives of each faith provide a brief overview of its migration to the UAE in the early 1960s and 1970s with an understanding of its rituals, which result in an engaging and informative read. This unique book was envisioned by the Reverend Canon Andrew Thompson from the Anglican Church in Abu Dhabi, and is a testament to the UAE’s highly tolerant views and acceptance of a very diverse group of people who come from all over the world.

The Reverend Canon Andrew Thompson, who has also authored Jesus of Arabia and Christianity in the UAE, commented, “The UAE has been home to people from diverse faiths. The book aims at celebrating this diversity and building greater understanding amongst communities on different rituals and customs. We have brought together ten faiths including the Baha’i, Buddhist, Hindu, Jewish and the Sikh communities as well as the various sects of the Christian community and we all look forward to creating a more loving and tolerant place for our future generations.”

Mr Ian Fairservice, Managing Partner and Editor-in-Chief at Motivate Media Group, said: “The book is very current and in a time when there are so many misconceptions about people based on their beliefs, Celebrating Tolerance: Religious Diversity in the United Arab Emirates is a step in the right direction to bring our communities closer together.”

The book will be launched in a private ceremony at the British Embassy on Sunday, 3 February 2019.

About the Author

The Reverend Canon Andrew Thompson was born in the UK, from where he got degrees in Behavioral Sciences and Islamic Studies. He moved to Jordan in 1990 to work with the Palestinian youth and later to Dubai as an Anglican Church youth worker. He trained as a Church of England priest in the UK, getting ordained in 2000. He later moved back to the Middle East to Ras Al Khaimah, Fujairah and then to Kuwait in 2006, where he was the chaplain of the local parish at St Paul’s. In the UAE, he has been the pastor of the St Andrew’s Church in Abu Dhabi since 2010 and was awarded the MBE in 2011 for services to human rights and promoting interfaith dialogue between Christians and Muslims.

Motivate Publishing

Established in 1979, Motivate Publishing operates in partnership between Ian Fairservice and Obaid Humaid Al Tayer, now Minister of State for Financial Affairs, UAE. With a staff of over 200 experienced professionals based out of our Dubai headquarters, and the Abu Dhabi and London offices, our wider publishing expertise includes award-winning print and digital titles such as What’s On, Emirates Woman, Gulf Business and Emirates Airlines’ Open Skies. Apart from books and magazines, we also produce content across other platforms like video, digital media, cinema and events. More information about Motivate Publishing can be found online. We can also be found on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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