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Tveit: “Looking for the traces of God’s own way to justice and peace, we discover the signs of God’s presence in and with the world”

Tveit: “Looking for the traces of God’s own way to justice and peace, we discover the signs of God’s presence in and with the world”

Photo: Marianne Ejdersten/WCC

18 June 2017

World Council of Churches (WCC) general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit offered greetings at the commemoration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation on 18 June in Bern.

The event drew guests from 26 churches and 11 nations. Present at the Reformation commemoration was Cardinal Kurt Koch, Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby and Jerry Pillay, president of the World Communion of Reformed Churches (WCRC).

Tveit reflected that rediscovery of the gospel of Christ as a gospel of love and transformative grace was at the heart of the Reformation and its liberating message to the world.

“Today,” he said, “this message leads the churches on their way toward reconciliation and a strong common witness to the world—as we have seen last year in Lund in the joint event of the Lutheran World Federation and the Roman Catholic Church.”

The ecumenical movement is one of love and transformative grace, liberating the churches from past prejudice and strengthening them in their witness for justice, peace and the care for creation in the world, he continued. “On the basis of the gospel, we are calling one another to visible unity in the world of today, so the world may believe in the  gospel giving hope to the world.”

It was in this spirit that the 2013 Busan assembly of the WCC called the churches and all people of good will to join in a pilgrimage of justice and peace and to engage in transformative action, Tveit added. “Looking for the traces of God’s own way to justice and peace, we discover the signs of God’s presence in and with the world.”

When we look around and reflect on recent developments in this world, we see worrying signs of crises, he said. “I know many people who are losing hope and are afraid that worse things are to come. But we also see a search for unity that embraces the diversity of humanity.”

Many people are inspired by the good news of the gospel as the treasure they trust, he said. “They do not give up; they search for signs of God’s reign of justice and peace. Walking together the way of justice and peace, they find new community, courage and joy.”

Tveit concluded with the ongoing effect of the focus on the liberating dimension of the gospel as the most important effect of the Reformation.

Reformation commemoration in Bern

Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace

Read the text by the WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit: English - German - French