World Council of Churches

A worldwide fellowship of churches seeking unity, a common witness and Christian service

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The WCC member churches' common calling

As part of their fellowship in the World Council, the member churches acknowledge a common calling, which they seek to fulfill together.

By belonging to the WCC a church acknowledges its willingness to identify itself in a visible, sustained and organized way with the goals of the ecumenical movement and the search for deeper fellowship.

Member churches of the Council seek:

  • to nurture the ability to pray, live, act and grow together in community, dealing with disagreements through theological discussion, prayer and dialogue;
  • •to take responsibility for one another in a spirit of common faithfulness to the gospel rather than of judgement and exclusion;
  • •to join in service that extends beyond their own boundaries and to link their own local contexts with the global reality;
  • •to recognize that they are part of a fellowship that has a voice of its own and thus to give serious consideration to what the Council says and does on behalf of that fellowship;
  • •to implement within their own life the agreements reached through joint theological study and reflection by the fellowship as a whole;
  • •to support one another in times of need and struggle and to celebrate each other's joys and hopes;
  • •to understand the mission of the church as a joint responsibility that is shared with others, not undertaken in competition with them;
  • •to enter into a fellowship of worship and prayer with other churches;
  • •to take a full part in the life and work of the WCC and its activities and to contribute to the resources the Council needs to carry these out.

All this is summarized in the member churches' recognition of their "common calling" - a dynamic understanding of the WCC as a fellowship of pilgrims moving towards the same goal.