In this day and age there is a pressing and urgent appeal to our sense of mercy, charity and the care for others. But who is 'the other' nowadays? The lonely woman next doors, the homeless man outside the supermarket, the Syrian family in a refugee reception camp, the starving child in the Oxfam advert? How can you help them, do they actually need you, and how do we avoid mercy resulting in empty promises and half-hearted deeds? Are you, perhaps, in need of mercy yourself?
These and other questions concerning mercy – misericordia in Latin – take centre stage during an inspiring evening filled with performances, guided tours and discussions at various locations in the Oude Kerk in Amsterdam. For centuries the Oude Kerk has played a pivotal role in caring for the poor, but what can we learn from this legacy today? What is the current significance of the Biblical notion of mercy, and how do other religions and cultures understand charity? What do these concepts mean to a banker on the Zuidas, Amsterdam's financial center, or to a holidaymaker on the Greek isle of Lesbos?
Mohamed Ajouaou, Rosaliene Israël and Jeroen Smit
Misericordia is a multi-year research project that involves us exploring the present- day meaning and value of concepts such as ‘mercy’ and ‘charity’ together with experts and artists. The aim is to prompt a discussion about prevailing views and practices and to generate new ideas and images – amid and beyond existing dogmas and doctrines – in the guise of stories and new works of art. Read more about the project and the public programme via the misericordia blog.
Admission: €5 (free for Museumkaart / I Amsterdam Card holders)
Book your tickets via the website or purchase them in person at the ticket desk
Language: Dutch (live translation into English provided)