News Releases

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew to Host International Forum on Modern Slavery and the Arts

Following the celebration of the new ecclesiastical year and the commemoration of the Indiction, His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew announced his plans to convene a fourth international Forum on Modern Slavery. The fourth Forum will bring together scholars, artists and experts in material culture for an exploration of the various media through which modern enslavement is expressed, perpetuated, rejected and resolved. This Forum aims to raise awareness and generate innovative collaborations related to the capacity of the arts and material culture for ending modern slavery and, thereby, protecting human dignity and fundamental human rights.

The Ecumenical Patriarchate’s establishment of the Task Force on Modern Slavery was launched with the first Forum, “Sins Before our Eyes,” held in Istanbul, Turkey, in February 2017, which was a collaborative effort of Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew and His Grace Archbishop Justin (Welby) of Canterbury. The second Forum, “Old Problems in the New World,” was held in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in May 2018, and convened experts addressing the realities of slavery in the Americas. The third Forum, held in Istanbul in January 2019, concentrated on capacity building, programmatic cooperation and religious literacy improvements by which the Ecumenical Patriarchate’s global ministries can help to eliminate the complex, intersectional causes, contours and consequences of modern slavery.

The fourth Forum will be held on the island of Kalymnos, Greece, in May 2020.