Wednesday 29 May 2019

Celebrating 50 years of the Universal Manifesto

50th Anniversary of Universal Manifesto stories

On 24 May 2019 Emmaus International celebrated the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Universal Manifesto. 180 delegates and members from around the world gathered in Berne, Switzerland to discuss the history of the manifesto, what it means today and to renew its values for the future.

Emmaus International is a global movement made up of 350 member organisations across 37 different countries. Founded in 1971 by French priest Abbé Pierre, the organisations run at a local level and work to empower those suffering from social exclusion.

 The Universal Manifesto is a document drafted by Abbé Pierre to unite the Emmaus International movement in shared foundational principles and values. Abbé Pierre hosted the first international assembly of the Emmaus movement in Berne on 24 and 25 May 1969 where the manifesto was agreed on and signed. The manifesto is a reminder of Emmaus International’s roots and its commitment to serving those who suffer most.

The Universal Manifesto remains a founding text of Emmaus and must be signed by any organisation wanting to join the movement. It is available in 21 languages.

Find out more about the Universal Manifesto.