Brunnen Workshops at the 11th WCC Assembly in Karlsruhe

The assembly will be a time to gather strength for our common pilgrimage in the world in its present reality, to hear from each other, and to encourage one another as we celebrate the love that, through the Holy Spirit, moves, heals, and empowers us.” (Assembly theme paper)

Brunnen is a German word for well. The well is the space for encounter and sharing, satisfying ones thirst, greeting a visitor and welcoming a stranger. The Brunnen has also a spiritual meaning, it is a space that shows diversity as well as existing and expected unity. It is a space of encounter that aims to open the horizon. It gives space to the broader ecumenical movement and civil society. The Brunnen will provide space for harvesting the outcomes of the pilgrimage and developing ideas for the future.

Previous assemblies provided similar space through the Padare in Harare (1998), Mutirão in Porto Alegre (2006) and Madang in Busan (2013).

The Brunnen will be the heart of the assembly, open from 11.00 until 21.00 every weekday of the assembly. At the assembly, the Brunnen programme will be the main element for what we call the Assembly Participants track, which will be running parallel to the Delegates track and the Ecumenical Encounter Programme track (programme in the City of Karlsruhe, mainly for local/regional participants).

The Brunnen programme includes workshops, exhibitions, networking zones and side-events. We encourage ecumenical partners, ecumenical networks and member churches to propose workshops, exhibitions or performances.

Workshop applications are now closed. We thank all of those who submitted an application. The working group is currently reviewing each application and will get back to each applicant regarding the status of their workshop. For any other questions, email

Workshops are events that provide an opportunity for assembly participants to come together to discuss and explore a specific topic. Each 90-minute workshop is offered one time. There are 100 workshop spaces available. A WCC member church or ecumenical partner should endorse applications. All workshops will be evaluated.

Workshops should:

  • Provide space for the ecumenical family to discuss issues of common concern and/or emerging challenges, allowing for discussion in an environment of mutual learning;
  • Enable the exchange of information and sharing of knowledge, specialisation and experience, while developing common approaches to best practices;
  • Demonstrate the interconnectedness of topics;
  • Help to develop guidance around future work and initiatives.

The WCC encourages applicants to ensure that their workshops are interactive and creative. Formal presentations should be kept to a minimum. Introductory comments should introduce the topic and initiate reflection and sharing among participants. Workshops are encouraged to explore the core dimensions of the Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace in celebrating the gifts, visiting the wounds and transforming injustice”.

Workshops should help generate connections in the ecumenical movement leading to empowerment and action to respond to one or more of the following five workshop themes and issues.

Spirituality: celebrating and praying together

This workshop offers an ecumenical space for sharing of resources and reflections on how we pray, preach, and celebrate the sacraments on the ecumenical journey to reconciliation and unity. This track also invites discovering creative ways of engaging with practical, theological and pastoral questions in relation to the challenges that the COVID-19 pandemic causes for spiritual and congregational life.

Formation: innovative ecumenical and interreligious learning together

This workshop centres on the importance of innovative learning in the ecumenical dialogue and movement, exploring diverse aspects of education and formation, including capacity building and empowerment. The scope encompasses theological education, ecumenical and interreligious learning at large, and intercultural, interfaith, and diaconal formation. This includes conversation on opportunities and challenges brought by digitalisation. Sharing on transformative methodologies and didactics will be a core component.

Mission and Witness: community building and engaging in reconciliation together

This workshop engages with the call to discipleship and puts an emphasis on the communal expressions of Christian witness in the world. In the face of polarization and fragmentation in societies, community-building and reconciliation have become core concerns. This includes mission from the margins, listening to the prophetic witness of indigenous knowledge and of people at the “margins”, addressing poverty, secularism, colonialism, the legacy of slavery and diverse expressions of empire, engaging with the reality of migration and learning from migrant churches. This track invites to share experiences from creative projects at congregational and church level that are geared toward evangelistic outreach. Moreover, it includes the focus on healing and health-promoting churches. 

Justice and Peace: affirming human dignity and addressing inequality together

This workshop focuses on manifold struggles to overcome injustice, exclusion and discrimination: e.g. racial justice and gender justice in church and society as well as social justice in a digital age. The track provides a space for sharing effective mechanisms to denounce and end human rights violations. It explores the ecumenical work on nonviolent peacebuilding, on truth and trauma, ecumenical diakonia, and the joint advocacy for disarmament. It shares good practices in strengthening the agency of the disempowered and vulnerable, denounces systemic injustice, and provides examples of practical collaboration with other faith-based and secular partners. Workshops can start from specific justice issues or specific locations, and engage intersectional and broader dynamics that are geared toward articulating an ecumenical voice for justice.

Creation: responding to the climate urgency together

We are living in the Anthropocene, where human beings are the cause of the ecological problems. This workshop highlights the need for economic and ecological transformation in churches and societies. It addresses the theological and ethical questions, provides space for sharing good practices of churches transforming their practices and systems in view of the climate urgency, land displacement, water security, etc. Moreover, it includes advocacy initiatives that link local, regional and global dimensions, and the networking between different actors and movements in this field.

Workshop applications are now closed. We thank all of those who submitted an application. The working group is currently reviewing each application and will get back to each applicant regarding the status of their workshop. For any other questions, email

The networking zone will be a lively and dynamic space where participants will gather around several ecumenical hubs. These hubs are dedicated places for WCC, ACT Alliance and the host churches.

Exhibition stands are spaces that provide an opportunity for the assembly participants and the wider public to enjoy a range of diverse offerings from the ecumenical partners, networks and membership of the World Council of Churches.

Exhibition stands are not limited to static presentations and displays (photo essays, art exhibitions, etc.) and are encouraged to include a variety of offerings.

Exhibition stands should introduce and promote the exploration of themes and issues in a visual form, but also encourage participants to actively interpret and explore exhibition content. They should create an interactivity between people viewing the exhibition, the exhibitor and the exhibition itself. Finally, they should build networks and mobilise interest around themes, issues and should demonstrate partnership with churches and ecumenical partners within the fellowship.

More information on exhibition stands (sizes, price, etc.) will be available soon. 

Ecumenical partners, networks and members churches are invited to propose side-events and performances. Events may include music, cultural performances, concerts, visual arts or spaces for discussion. Stages for performances will be available at different locations in the Brunnen.  

We encourage side-events to be artistically appealing to a broad spectrum of participants, to highlight the theme of the assembly, explore specific issues and include moments of celebration. Side-events should provide participants the opportunity to share information and experiences, and to be a platform for cultural exchange and sharing.

To propose a side-event or performance, please contact the assembly office directly at by 31 May 2022.