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Norwegian visit enriches ecumenical experience

Norwegian visit enriches ecumenical experience

Visitors from Church of Norway and Norwegian Church Aid at the Ecumenical Centre, Geneva. © Albin Hillert/WCC

28 September 2017

Visiting Geneva on 20-22 September, representatives of the Church of Norway Council on Ecumenical and International Relations and the leadership of Norwegian Church Aid dedicated time with colleagues at the World Council of Churches (WCC), the Lutheran World Federation (LWF) and ACT Alliance, to explore and learn more about ecumenical work around the world.

Through Bible study, workshops and sessions on topics of Mission and Evangelism, zooming in on the upcoming Conference on World Mission and Evangelism in Arusha, Tanzania; International Affairs, with a focus on developments in the Middle East; Faith and Order; and peace communication; the group explored links between churches’ work at the national and local levels, and the global Ecumenical Movement.

The visit coincided with the WCC’s annual Staff Enrichment Days, and so the group attended a joint session with the LWF and ACT on “Ecumenical Diakonia and Development” led by Prof. Dr Kjell Nordstokke. The session explored what it is that makes churches unique in their diaconal work, as they advocate for human rights and human dignity around the world.

“Receiving visits from our member churches, like this visit from our Norwegian colleagues or the visit from the United Church of Christ in the USA and Canada that happened just last week, is something we deeply appreciate. It offers us an opportunity to connect with, and receive input from, our colleagues around the world who do hands-on work every day in proclaiming the good news, and who share our commitment to the Ecumenical Movement,” said WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit.

“For me as general secretary, this is a particularly inspiring aspect of our work together as the World Council of Churches, and it is a hopeful sign of the living fellowship of churches,” Tveit concluded.

The annual Staff Enrichment Days are a time when WCC staff temporarily put aside regular office work to share, connect and network with each other, and to think about the connections between their areas of work. This year, WCC staff explored “Ecumenical Diakonia and Development” as the thematic focus of the Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace in 2018, and looked forward towards the World Conference on Mission and Evangelism and the celebration of the WCC’s 70th anniversary, both in 2018, as well as the next WCC Assembly, in 2021.

Visit the WCC

WCC staff resolve to work with “faith, hope and love” (WCC press release of 28 September 2017)

The motor engineers of the ecumenical movement (WCC press release of 18 September 2017)

Norwegian Church Aid

Church of Norway

WCC member church in Norway