Rauha. Paix. Friede. Paghidait.
“Now is the time to take action, to build that bridge” – Tveit speaks on climate justice in Oslo, Norway
“Now is the time for someone to take action, to start building that bridge. It is possible, if we all contribute our part,” said WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit in Oslo, Norway on 17 February. Speaking at a convention of union members and political leaders, Tveit offered the final reflection on a day under the theme ”Bridges to the future”.
World Council of Churches general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit expressed sadness on 16 February with the news of a bomb attack on the Lal Shahbaz Qalandar Sufi shrine in Sindh province, Pakistan.
Christianity is growing faster in Africa than anywhere else in the world says Rev. Fr Dr Lawrence Iwuamadi, Professor of Ecumenical Biblical Hermeneutics at the Ecumenical Institute, Bossey. He was the convener of a discussion on the Anthology of African Christianity held by the WCC on 15 February with a panel of experts at the Ecumenical Centre in Geneva.
The WCC celebrated implementation of its responsible water commitments in an event on 15 February in the Ecumenical Centre. The WCC became a Blue Community In October 2016. The special occasion was marked by the visit of Dr Maude Barlow from the Blue Planet Project, Canada, who awarded a “blue community certificate” to the WCC and raised awareness of the problems created by indiscriminate use of disposable plastic bottles and their negative impact on our planet’s ecosystem.
After learning about the link between HIV and sexual and gender-based violence, the Rev. Neila Ingram said what was on the minds of many women religious leaders: “So now I have work to go and do in my community and church.”
At a 27 January conference in Rome, Rev. Henrik Grape, coordinator of the World Council of Churches (WCC) Working Group on Climate Change, spoke about how to transform our world to sustainability and, at the same time, fight poverty and hunger without destroying the environment.
The WCC, along with the Geneva Interfaith Forum on Climate Change, Environment and Human Rights; Franciscans International; and Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual University organised a public panel discussion on climate change and human rights from the perspective of ethics, spirituality and justice on 13 February at UN office in Geneva.
Is religion discriminating? Does there exist discrimination within and by different religions? World Council of Churches general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit explored these questions with fellow panelists in Trondheim, Norway.
The visit 9-10 February 2017 to the World Council of Churches by the Patriarch of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church, H.H. Abune Matthias, occasioned reflection on the distinctive history and traditions of that ancient church, as well as its role in Ethiopian society and in the larger ecumenical landscape. Coming to his work from a lifetime of service in the church and its monasteries and schools during an especially turbulent time, Abune Matthias was elected in 2013. The church numbers about 50 million members, including several million outside Ethiopia itself, where it accounts for about half the population. What follows is a brief interview with the Patriarch.
When the Bossey Ecumenical Institute marked 70 years of formation, hundreds of current and former students, professors and friends gathered at the Château du Bossey to celebrate. Rev. Khaing Moh Moh was one of that band, but perhaps she travelled the furthest, from Myanmar, where she serves the Shan State Lisu Baptist Association about 200 kilometres north of Mandalay, the country’s second biggest city.
The Methodist Church of Haiti is celebrating its 200th anniversary. Founded as a mission in 1817, it is the oldest Protestant church in the Caribbean nation. Special events in Haiti’s capital, Port-au-Prince, last week drew attention to the church’s history and its contributions to the country.
Patriarch Abune Matthias of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church offered a special greeting at the Ecumenical Centre in Geneva on 10 February, commending the success of global ecumenical work while acknowledging the grave crises tearing the world apart.
The staff members of the Office of Interreligious Dialogue and Cooperation of the WCC as well as their colleagues from the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, held their annual meeting on 30-31 January.
More than 120 religious and spiritual leaders, health workers and young people met on 7-8 February to focus on strengthening the fight against stigma in the HIV response in Kenya. They were joined by representatives from the Kenyan government, civil society organizations, networks of people living with HIV, and development partners for an event in Nairobi. The meeting, “Faith on the Fast Track: Eliminating Stigma and Discrimination Through Love and Dialogue” aimed to assess the impact of the Framework for Dialogue methodology which has been implemented in several countries since 2013.
All forms of human enslavement are the most heinous of sins, violating the free will and the integrity of every human being created in the image of God, stated the Forum on Modern Slavery, co-organized by the Ecumenical Patriarchate and the Church of England in Istanbul from February 6-7, 2017.
The Church of South India, Green Anglicans and other groups are sharing creative ways to observe a “carbon fast" during the Lenten season. A carbon fast challenges people to examine their daily actions and reflect on how they impact the environment. The carbon fast campaigns are designed so that, over Lent, people can take small steps to reduce carbon dioxide output with the hope of helping the environment and bringing the world one step closer to a sustainable existence.
Rev. Dr Benjamin Simon was born in Germany, but he is also very much a product of Africa. Since September 2016, he has held the post of Professor of Ecumenical Missiology at the WCC's Ecumenical Institute in Bossey, a post he assumed just in time for the celebrations of 70 years’ serving ecumenism worldwide.
Expressing concern regarding recently announced US measures related to refugee admissions and entry into the US by seven Muslim-majority countries, the World Council of Churches (WCC), ACT Alliance (ACT), and The Lutheran World Federation (LWF) affirmed that faith calls all Christians to love and welcome the stranger, the refugee, the internally displaced person - “the other.”
Before accepting the position of programme executive for the WCC Faith and Order Commission, Dr Ani Ghazaryan Drissi was involved with the WCC in several different ways.