A new film about the historic meeting between St Francis of Assisi and the Sultan of Egypt, Malik Al-Kamil will have its Australian premiere in Sydney next month, Catholic Outlook reports.
This docudrama from US company Unity Productions Foundation (UPF) presents the historic meeting at Damietta in Egypt nearly 800 years ago when St Francis and his companion crossed no man’s land between the two opposing armies from the Christian camp to the Sultan’s camp and spent some days meeting and discussing with the Sultan and his court.
Chair of the Diocese of Parramatta’s Interfaith Commission, Rev Walter Fogarty from Sacred Heart Parish, Westmead, said The Sultan and the Saint is an inspirational film for our time.
“Recalling an historical encounter between two people who sought peace in the midst of war reminds us that today we, too, must have a vision of peace grounded in dialogue, to dare to speak when so many refuse to,” he said.
The Franciscan Action Network (FAN) partnered with UPF to make the film. Patrick Carolan, FAN Executive Director said St Francis and Al-Kamil are a testament to what following faith means. “It’s very important that Christians and Muslims are in a relationship with each other, to learn from each other,” he said.
Featuring dramatic re-enactments and renowned scholarship, the film includes interviews with Michael Cusato (St Bonaventure University), Sr Kathy Warren (Sisters of St Francis), Suleiman Mourad (Smith College), Homayra Ziad, Institute for Christian and Jewish Studies, Paul Moses (author of The Saint and the Sultan), and others.
Sydney presenter of TEN Network News Hugh Riminton will be the MC for the premiere at Western Sydney University’s Parramatta South Campus on July 29.
Following the screening, there will be a formal response from a Muslim theologian, Mehmet Ozalp, and a Franciscan Friar, Br Matthew Beckmann OFM.