Message from new Executive Director of GAF

Message from new Executive Director of GAF

"The Discipline of Love and the Love of Discipline" (by Nicoleta Acatrinei, Ph.D)

 As I start this new mission as executive director of Geneva Agape Foundation, my parents’ wisdom which nourished and watered my mind and soul during my early education resonates in a meaningful way in this new beginning.

I was born in a small town surrounded by hundreds of years old monasteries not far from the Oriental Carpathian Mountains. I grew up among people walking on earth while contemplating the heaven. Their life was made up of love of discipline and of discipline of love. Their days were centred in cultivating love inwardly and outwardly, in contemplation and in action, in silence and in speech, at personal and universal levels. Both, love and discipline are necessary to achieve a sustainable economy.

At the Geneva Agape Foundation, I will draw on this rich and profound spiritual heritage and on my previous research on prosocial behaviour, altruism  and patristic economics  to continue and develop programs for those economic and business actors who already understood that a flourishing society cannot exist without a sustainable economy, and a sustainable economy cannot exist without values & virtues-driven strategies and action programs.

The nexus of this approach is the HUMAN factor. That’s why at the Geneva Agape Foundation we focus on economic actors and on their growth both inwardly and outwardly. This double development is the foundation of a successful and sustainable economic activity capable to build a “beautiful society” with “beautiful humans”. I understand "beauty" in the classical sense of the love of “beauty” as we find it in the ancient yet alive philokalic tradition as well as in the classical Greek philosophy of "Kalos". Read more here Philokalia | Eastern Orthodox texts | Britannica

In this vein of the philokalic inspiration and at the intersection with economics, I propose the concept of the “beautiful disciplined economy”. The practice of a disciplined business is successfully developed at MIT, by William Aulet, Managing Director of the Martin Trust Center for MIT Entrepreneurship, professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management, who’s book on disciplined entrepreneurship was translated in more than twenty languages (see here more Disciplined Entrepreneurship: 24 Steps to a Successful Startup)

Message from new President GAF

Message from new President GAF

New GAF Executive Director: Nicoleta Acatrinei

CS and NA handover

On 1 June 2021, the former Executive Director of GAF, Prof. Dr Christoph Stückelberger, handed over to the new Executive Director Dr Nicoleta Acatrinei. Stückelberger is now President of the Board of Foundation.

Nicoleta Acatrinei knows GAF since many years. She grew up in Romania, studied economics and was a banker in her country already at a young age. She then moved to Lausanne/Switzerland for a PhD at IDHEAP (public administration) and also got a master in theology at the University of Laussane. Faith and business was also her topic as a researcher and a teacher at the Princeton University/USA during the last five years. She was also teaching at the famous Sun Yat-sen University in South China. Her broad professional background, combined with her spirituality as a Christian Romanian Orthodox and her global experience and networks will bring GAF to the next level of outreach (more). The GAF Board and Team warmly welcome you, Nicoleta, as new, full time, GAF Executive Director!

Christoph Stückelberger served as part time GAF-Director during the last five years 2016-2021 and was a co-founder in 2014. He is now President of the Board of Foundation. The Board welcomes you, Christoph, as the new President!

The Board at the same time expresses its profound thanks to the interim President Roland Schatz. He stepped in 2019 in succession of the GAF-Co-founder Cui Wantian. He lead the Board with engagement and very carefully in a period of transition. The Board expresses to you, Roland, its profound thanks!  

Roland Schatz

Roland Schatz

"Because love is the same "

"Because love is the same "

"Because love is the same"

There is no man or woman

Because blood is the same

There is no Christianity or Buddhism

Because kindness is the same

There is no dog or human

Because hunger is the same

There is no doctor or cleaner

Because job is the same

There is no black or white, yellow or red

Because the world is the same

There is no East or West, ground or sky

Because space is the same 

There is no king or servant

Because humanity is the same.

There is no old or young

Because laughter is the same.

 Likewise all he leaves of a tree may look different but they all come from the same root. 

 

Likewise there is no you nor is there me

Because love is the same. 

 Thuy Bui-Howarth, Artist, Freelance Designer

SAVE THE DATE: FaithInvest's first Global Members’ Conference – June 8 & 9

SAVE THE DATE: FaithInvest's first Global Members’ Conference – June 8 & 9

Pragmatic Faith-Consistent Investing, a working conference for faith-based asset owners, will be an action-oriented, information-rich event set over two half days (12pm-5pm BST on June 8, and 2pm-9pm BST on June 9). Aimed at FaithInvest members, it will showcase our new Member Portal and Manager Database, discuss Member Working Groups (from impact investing to solutions for smaller investors) and provide curated networking. Register your interest at  events@faithinvest.org. Other faith-based asset owners and interested parties who wish to find out more, contact  engagement@faithinvest.org. More information: www.faithinvest.org/members.

GAF invited by CPC for online conference

The Communist Party of China (CPC), leading China, celebrates its 100th Anniversary in 2021. The Geneva Agape Foundation was honoured of being selected among numerous organizations worldwide to attend the online conference “STORIES OF CPC: ZHEJIANG’S ACHIEVEMENTS IN PRACTISING XI JINPING THOUGHT ON SOCIALISM WITH CHINESE CHARACTERISTICS FOR A NEW ERA” on April 14. The focus was on achievements in the famous prosperous East Coast Zhejiang province south of Shanghai. Together with China NGO Network for International Exchanges (CNIE) and other international participants, GAF Executive Director Christoph Stückelberger and staff Haicun Kong witnessed the impressive achievements from different sides of China under the leadership of the Communist Party of China, from village level to international cooperation. GAF continues to offer its services for a fruitful and respectful cooperation with China and its CPC for enhancing multilateral cooperation, prosperity and peace. GAF sent a congratulation message to CPC for its 100th anniversary.

China 100 years

Congratulations to the 100th Anniversary of the Communist Party of China

The Geneva Agape Foundation with its Head Office at the UN area in Geneva/Switzerland congratulates the Communist Party of China to its 100th Anniversary! China under the leadership of the CPC and with the hard work and efforts of all people, enables an impressive development of the country and contributes to the international development in a very significant way. Major achievements of China under the CPC is the contribution to the right to food and water (as China is able to feed almost its entire population of 1.44 billion people, which corresponds to almost twenty percent of the world population), the right to education, the right to development and many more social and economic rights.

The Geneva Agape Foundation was founded in 2004 as the first foundation in Switzerland founded by a Chinese entrepreneur from mainland China. We offer our services of cooperation with the CPC, with the China NGO Network for International Exchanges CNIE, with academic and other institutions in China and the UN institutions in Geneva in order to strengthen multilateral cooperation, prosperity and peace.

Prof. Dr Dr h.c. Christoph Stückelberger

Executive Director Geneva Agape Foundation

热烈庆祝中国共产党成立100周年 !

日内瓦爱梦成真基金会在瑞士日内瓦热烈庆祝中国共产党成立100周年 !自中国共产党成立以来,中国在其领导下取得了举世瞩目的发展成果,也在国际社会树立了非常积极正面的良好形象。中国共产党领导下的中国政府不仅成功帮助中国人民脱贫致富(中国拥有约14亿人口,占全球人口总数的20%),而且在推进人权、教育、发展等其他社会以及经济权利方面也取得了巨大的成果。

日内瓦爱梦成真基金会成立于2004年,也是瑞士第一个由中国人设立的基金会,我们与中国民间组织国际交流促进会(CNIE)、日内瓦联合国相关机构一起,为中国共产党领导下的中国政府在学术研究和教育等方面提供多项服务与合作。在此,我们希望今后能够促进更多方面的合作,共同促进世界和平与世界的良性发展。

Hans Küng and Prince Philip - two outstanding champions of global values

Hans Küng and Prince Philip - two outstanding champions of global values

Tribute to Hans Küng …

Hans Küng was a pioneer of global ethics and thus a key inspirational source for Globethics.net. He died on 6 April 2021 at the age of 93. Hans Küng, professor of ecumenical theology, was one of the most outstanding Catholic theologians of the 20th century worldwide. He became famous with his harsh critique of the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church and the Vatican and made many proposals for church reform, especially in line with the Second Vatican Council. In the context of the search for global values, I especially honour him here for his outstanding pioneer work for global ethics, a World Ethics as he called it. He proposed a set of five core values to serve as common ground within and between religions and with the whole of humanity. His sharp theological and analytical skills and global knowledge led him also to apply these values to the global economy and politics.

Hans Küng grew up in Sursee in Switzerland, only twenty kilometers from where I grew up. For him as for myself, it was a fertile ground for ecumenical openness and for gaining a global horizon. Even though deeply rooted in the Catholic faith and church, he worked for ecumenical cooperation since his PhD on the Protestant theologian Karl Barth. When I founded Globethics.net in 2004 during a one-week consultation in Bossey near Geneva, Switzerland, I invited Hans Küng as the Founder and Director of his Global Ethic Foundation in Tübingen, Germany. As he could not participate, he sent his General Secretary with whom we explored from day one ways of cooperation. The approach was complementary, global, ecumenical and interreligious in both foundations. However, the Global Ethic Foundation promoted mainly Küng’s very rich and important concept of a world ethics, whereas at Globethics.net we developed a global network and movement with a global platform for dialogue, research and action and with an emphasis on the Global South and cultural diversity.

Küng invited me to the founding event of the World Ethos Institute (WEIB) at the Peking University in Beijing, China in 2012. Another common ground of Hans Küng and Globethics.net was to promote global common ethical values across cultures and continents, including China. Globethics.net owes much to Hans Küng and I warmly recommend that his numerous books continue to be studied as source of ongoing inspiration for a values-driven world in peace.

 …and Prince Philip

On 9 April 2021, only three days after Hans Küng, another outstanding champion of global values died: His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, husband of Queen Elizabeth and Duke of Edinburgh. He died at the age of 99 years. He was not only the modest husband of Queen Elizabeth and thus to a large extent in her shadow, he was also a great humanist and early pioneer for environmental protection. He was especially engaged in mobilizing the world religions as key supporters and drivers of environmental protection. As international President of the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), he was in 1985 instrumental in inviting conservation organisations and faith leaders to Assisi in Italy. “He was the first world leader to understand that the religions of the world could be natural partners for the conservation movement”, wrote Martin Palmer in his tribute to Prince Philip. Palmer worked with Prince Philip for 36 years on this subject. Martin Palmer, Founder and Head of the FaithInvest Foundation, was inspired and supported by Prince Philip to continue to mobilise world religions and faith communities for development and the environment. FaithInvest is strategic partner of the Geneva Agape Foundation and also involved in Globethics.net.

Hans Küng and Prince Philip have been two outstanding pioneers and thought leaders for global values and peaceful cooperation for humanity and for creation. Their lives encourage us to continue building on these legacies for transformation.

Christoph Stückelberger
President Globethics.net
Executive Director Geneva Agape Foundation

Rooting your investment guidelines in faith-based principles

FaithInvest eventevent_210318

What are the practical steps and considerations involved in rooting your investment guidelines in your faith beliefs and values? What are the challenges – and is it really possible to make sustainable returns and have impact? 

Join this FaithInvest webinar for a lively, in-depth discussion on Tues 23 March (10.30 EST - 14.30 GMT - 15.30 CET). 

FaithInvest's Nana Francois and Mathew Jensen will be joined by FaithInvest's Chairman David Zellner, who is CIO of Wespath. Wespath has been serving the United Methodist Church for over 100 years, and manages the largest reporting faith-based pension fund in the US. 

Register: https://bit.ly/3cyPviv