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'A Friendly Dialogue' Launches at Unique New York Event

Contact: Craig Chastain, 503-614-1554


NEW YORK, Feb. 25 /Christian Newswire/ -- An historic book got an historic sendoff in New York as leaders of the publishing, media and diplomatic worlds gathered to celebrate the release of "A Friendly Dialogue Between An Atheist and A Christian" by co-authors Luis Palau and Zhao Qizheng.


The first collaboration between an American Christian evangelist and a Chinese scientist, scholar and atheist, "A Friendly Dialogue" is an open and frank exchange on issues of faith, culture, history, and politics. It has been a best-seller in China since its release in August of 2006: the much-anticipated English and Spanish versions, published by Zondervan (a division of HarperCollins Publishers) reached American bookstores this month.


At a unique launch event hosted by News Corporation CEO Rupert Murdock, HarperCollins CEO Jane Friedman and Zondervan CEO Moe Girkins, Palau and Zhao shared the story of creating the book's unique content through recorded dialogues that were later transcribed.


In introductory remarks, Ms. Friedman said "the world we live in is becoming increasingly global and new technologies are removing barriers that once separated countries and cultures. As this happens, it is important for us to be able to understand, respect and discuss our ideas and cultures. Dr. Palau and Minister Zhao have done just that, and I believe we all have something to learn from them."


"Minister Zhao and I learned so much about each other – and our cultures – during our dialogues," said Palau. "That two men could be so dramatically different in our beliefs and backgrounds and yet find so many areas of agreement should be a great encouragement to those who will interact with the Chinese people in the century ahead."


"I am a physicist and an architect by training," said Zhao, "but I have read the Bible several times, as well as the writings of Martin Luther, Calvin and others, so I welcomed and enjoyed the dialogue on issues of religion and faith with Dr. Palau."


Palau and Zhao also participated in a series of interviews with national and international media during their New York visit. Palau travels next to Buenos Aires where a major launch of the Spanish edition of "A Friendly Dialogue Between an Atheist and A Christian" will coincide with one of the largest outdoor festivals in the history of his global ministry.