Love and Forgiveness in Governance Symposium









Love and forgiveness are universal values practiced throughout the world. These two elements seem to transcend race, culture, and nationality, making them a central part of what makes us human. Despite this fact, limited research exists on the role of love and forgiveness — and its practical application — in governance structures. And experience reveals that leaders at all levels can exemplify or build aspects of love and forgiveness into their work, aiding in the advancement towards acceptance, decreased conflict, and ultimately lasting peace within their respective societies

From 13th-14th November 2014 in Washington DC, a symposium was held exploring the role of values of love and forgiveness in governance. It was organized by the Community of Sant’Egidio, the Berkley Center at Georgetown University, the School for Diplomacy and International Relations at Seton Hall University, Center for Human and Civil Rights at the University of Notre Dame, the Center for the Thought of John Paul II, and the Fetzer Institute.

By gathering international practitioners, scholars, and exemplars to share their experiences, this conference helped foster an understanding of the power and potential of love and forgiveness amongst the governing professions. The panels and presentations served as a platform to explore the larger trends and patterns which allow for the practical application and integration of love and forgiveness in political processes, the justice system, and conflict afflicted situations.



Copley Formal Lounge:
Georgetown University
37th and O Streets, N.W.,
Washington D.C. 20057

*Directions to Copley Formal Lounge:

RSVP For The Symposium Here


13 November 2014

Roundtable discussion: (School of Conflict Analysis and Resolution, George Mason University)

12:00 pm – 2:00 pm | Lunch and special roundtable discussion, Promoting Love and Forgiveness through Leadership: Representatives from the OIC Member States
• H.E. Alwi Shihab, “Learning from experience”;
• H.E. Syed Hamid Bin Syed Jaafar Albar, former Malaysian Minister of Home Affairs
• H.E. Mohamed Mouldi Kefi, former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Tunisia
• John Kiser, prominent author

Meditation: (Copley Crypt Chapel, Georgetown University)

3:00 pm – 3:30 pm | Meditation in the promotion of peace
• Dennis McAuliffe, Director of the Georgetown’s Contemplatives in Action Initiative

Opening keynote and reception: (Copley Formal Lounge, Georgetown University)

3:45 pm – 4:30 pm | Check-in and short film screening
• The Aceh Story

• The Challenge of Forgiveness

• The Lost Treasure of Solidarity

4:30 pm – 6:00 pm | Welcome and Keynote address
• Tom Banchoff, Kurian Thomas, and Andrea Bartoli, Welcome and Introductions
• Thais Corral, Introductory Remarks on “Generative Learning”
• Paul Bhatti, Keynote speaker

6:00 pm – 7:00 pm | Cocktail hour and Poster Presentations displayed

14 November 2014

Panels and plenary sessions: (Copley Formal Lounge, Georgetown University)

8:15 am – 9:00 am | Check-in with refreshments, and screenings of short films produced by Fetzer

9:00 am – 10:30 am | Panel 1, Embodying Love and Forgiveness in Society’s Political Processes
• Monika Gabriela Bartoszewicz, “Lost Treasure of Solidarity”
• Borislava Manojlovic, “Recognizing Love & Forgiveness through Exemplars”
• H.E. Alwi Shihab, “Learning from Experience: Interviews with Senior Officials of OIC Member States”

10:45 am – 12:15 pm |Panel 2, Facilitating Love and Forgiveness in Post Conflict Situation: Case Study Uganda

• Daniel Philpott, “Forgiveness and Peacebuilding in Uganda”
• Stephen Oola, Refugee law project

To Forgive or Not
• Lino Ogora, Justice and Reconciliation project
• Angelina Atyam, “The Challenge of Forgiveness”

12:15 pm – 1:45 pm | Lunch and Keynote with Miroslav Volf

1:45 pm – 3:15 pm |Panel 3, Incorporating Love and Forgiveness into the Justice System
• Judy Barsalou, “Justice and Accountability in Egypt’s Social Reconstruction”
• Jennifer Llewellyn, “A Restorative Approach to Governance: Building an International Learning Network”;
• Ed Quiko, “Learning from Experience: Forgiving Prisoners”
• Ibrahim Al-Hajjri, “Saudi’s Response to Pope John Paul II’s Forgiveness”

3:30 pm – 5:00 pm | Plenary Session, The Way Forward: Developing Agents of Change in Love and Forgiveness
• Andrea Bartoli, Moderator
• Jerry White, Keynote speaker
• Jennifer Llewllyn, Interlocutor
• Dan Philpott, Interlocutor

5:00 pm – 6:00 pm | Light reception and social with hors d’oeuvres


Many of the attendees of the conference will be staying at the Key Bridge Marriott located at 1401 Lee Hwy, Arlington, VA 22209. Georgetown University conveniently offers a shuttle service to and from the Marriott every 15 minutes. For a full schedule click here:


  1. Paul Bhatti, President of the Alliance of All Minorities in Pakistan
  2. Miroslav Volf, Henry B. Wright Professor of Systematic Theology, and Founding Director, Yale Center for Faith & Culture
  3. Jerry White, US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State
  4. Tom Banchoff, Vice President for Global Engagement at Georgetown University, and Director of Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs
  5. Andrea Bartoli, Dean of the School of International Relations and Diplomacy at Seton Hall University, and Permanent Representative of the Community of Sant’Egidio to the United States and the UN
  6. Thais Corral, Co-founder of Women’s Environment and Development Organization
  7. Alwi Shihab, Special Envoy to Middle East and Organization of the Islamic Conference
  8. Eduard Quiko, Professor Emeritus of Political Theory, College of the Ozarks
  9. Monika Gabriela Bartoszewicz, Research Specialist at Center for Thought of John Paul II
  10. Borislava Manojlovic, Director of Research Projects, Adjunct Professor of Conflict Analysis and Resolution, Seton Hall University
  11. Daniel Philpott, Director, Notre Dame Center for Civil and Human Rights, Department of Political Science Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies
  12. Stephen Oola, Refugee law project
  13. Evelyn Akullo, Justice and Reconciliation project
  14. Angelina Atyam, Co-Founder and Mentor, Concerned Children and Youth Association, Uganda
  15. Jennifer Llewellyn: Associate Professor, Schulich School of Law, Dalhousie University 
  16. Ibrahim Al-Hajjri, Research Specialist at School of Conflict Analysis and Resolution of George Mason University
  17. Judy Barsalou, President of the El Hibri Foundation
  18. Dennis McAulliffe, Director of Georgetown University’s Contemplatives in Action Initiative
  19. Mohamed Mouldi Kefi, Tunisia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs


Background materials

The Delicate Process of Establishing a Charter for Forgiveness

Charter for Forgiveness and Reconciliation

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