Moussa Serge Traore - Brazil

2008 Fulbright Interfaith Community Action Program

"I learned a lot about the reflections and actions on interreligious dialogue from the American context. Before (the program), I tended to value more interreligious actions but the formation at the DI helped me to combine intellectual and academic thinking and research in interreligious dialogue and pratical dialogue. Although I was trained in interreligious dialogue, the DI program provided me with a tool, a methodology for training others. It is my experience with the DI that inspired me to create a center for interreligious and intercultural dialogue within the Catholic University of Salvador."

Serge is a Catholic priest who belongs to the Society of Missionaries of Africa, an order itself dedicated to interreligious and intercultural dialogue. His FICAP experienced marked the beginning of a life of study and research into interreligious dialogue.

Following his FICAP experience in 2008, he worked at the Missionary Center in Kigali, Rwanda, teaching Interreligious Dialogue and World Religions at The Institute of Religious Studies of Butare, from 2009 to 2011. In 2010 he was also invited to join the African Christian and Islam Project, a scholarly project aimed at reflecting on a "truly African" and "truly Christian" theological approach to Muslim-Christian dialogue. As part of that work, he helped to organize two international conferences, one in Ghana (2010) and one in Kenya (2012).

From 2011 to 2012, Serge lived and conducted research among Muslims in the desert of Mauritania, and since 2012 has been living and working in Salvador da Bahia, Brazil, researching the African roots of Afro-Brazilian spirituality. There he helped to found the Cardinal Lavigerie Center of Studies and Research for Interreligious and Intercultural Dialogue, based at the Catholic University of Salvador. He is currently the Center's director.

His published works include two books, The Truth in Islam (2010) and Retrouver l’Harmonie (2014), among a host of academic articles.