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Saddleback Church Hosts Civil Forum on Peace in a Globalized Economy with Tony Blair

Contact: Kristin Cole, Kristin@alarryross.com; Lauren Williams, Lauren@alarryross.com; both with A. Larry Ross Communications, 972-267-1111

LAKE FOREST, Calif., March 1, 2011 /Christian Newswire/ -- Dr. Rick Warren and Saddleback Church will host Tony Blair on Sunday, March 6 at the Civil Forum on Peace in A Globalized Economy.

At the Forum, Warren will engage Blair, who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from May 1997 to June 2007, in candid conversation regarding his work in the Middle East peace process, and his role as the founder of the Tony Blair Faith Foundation.

"We are honored to have Tony Blair join us for this Civil Forum," said Rick Warren, founding pastor of the Orange County, Calif., mega church and author of the best-selling book, "The Purpose Driven Life." "His work as Prime Minister has truly contributed to subjugating the five global giants, which we work to fight in the Saddleback PEACE Plan. I am looking forward to engaging in discussion regarding how government, business and the Church can continue to help efforts toward peace."

Warren and Blair will talk about efforts to alleviate the five global giants Warren has identified in his PEACE Plan, including pandemic diseases, extreme poverty, illiteracy, self-centered leaders and spiritual emptiness. Warren's PEACE Plan seeks to mobilize millions of Christians around the world to Promote reconciliation, Equip servant leaders, Assist the poor, Care for the sick and Educate the next generation.

"As my wife Kay and I have been implementing the PEACE Plan in 68 developing countries, we have seen first-hand many of the hundreds of thousands of lives that have been changed through Prime Minister Blair's efforts," Warren said. "I hope that this Forum will enlighten American people in Mr. Blair's work on partnering and bringing about this process of change."

At the upcoming Civil Forum, Blair is expected to discuss the situation in the Middle East, and its impact not only on the region but in the wider world. He will also discuss the challenges that globalization brings to the modern world, and the reasons why he has set up his Faith Foundation as a way of building peaceful co-existence and understanding of why religion matters in the world.

"I am delighted to be welcomed by Pastor Rick Warren and Saddleback Church," Blair said. "I look forward to speaking with Rick on some of the profoundly significant issues and challenges that face us today in a globalized world."

The event will be held in the main auditorium of Saddleback Church on March 6 at 6:00 p.m. PDT. All free tickets were distributed to Saddleback Church attendees. No additional general admission tickets are available. Saddleback Church will have overflow venues available on the Saddleback Campus for anyone wishing to view the event by a video feed and will also stream live online at www.SaddlebackCivilForum.com.

The Saddleback Civil Forums were established to promote civil discourse and the common good of all. The Saddleback Civil Forum on Peace in a Globalized Economy will be the eighth such event hosted by Saddleback Church. Past Civil Forums have touched on a variety of issues from leadership to service to orphan care to reconciliation and featured such leaders as President George W. Bush and President Kagame of Rwanda. The most notable event was the Saddleback Civil Forum on The Presidency featuring presumptive presidential nominees Sens. Barack Obama and John McCain discussing issues of leadership, held in August 2008. Additional information about Civil Forums can be found at www.SaddlebackCivilForum.com.

"In addition to my primary calling to proclaim the Gospel message, these Civil Forums further my three other life goals: helping individuals accept responsibility, assisting the Church in regaining credibility and encouraging our society to return to civility," Pastor Rick Warren explained.

The Tony Blair Faith Foundation was launched in May 2008. In an increasingly globalized world, religion is at the very core of life for billions of people and it cannot be ignored. The Tony Blair Faith Foundation aims to promote respect and understanding between the major religions. It empowers, supports and trains young people to take multi-faith action against extreme poverty in over 100 countries, providing them with a positive alternative to those who try to use faith as a means to divide. It provides emerging and current leaders with the education and analysis to understand the role of religion in the modern world, and it breaks down barriers between young people of all faiths and none by using new technology to connect them. To find out more go to www.tonyblairfaithfoundation.org.  

Founded in 1980 by Rick Warren and his wife Kay, Saddleback Church is located in Lake Forest, Calif. With an average weekly attendance of 22,000, it is one of the largest churches in America. For additional information about Saddleback Church, visit
www.saddleback.com.

EDITOR'S NOTE: A live satellite feed will be available. Additional details will be available in the coming days. A limited number of working press credentials will be available. To apply, contact Kristin Cole,
Kristin@alarryross.com or Lauren Williams, Lauren@alarryross.com at A. Larry Ross Communications at 972-267-1111.