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January 2004

The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity

Staff appointments in the WCC in 2003

Alexander Belopopsky from the UK was appointed coordinator of the WCC Public Information team by the WCC officers meeting in November 2003. Belopopsky, a lay member of the Orthodox Church (Ecumenical Patriarchate), has been responsible for the WCC Europe Desk since February 1996, and will move into his new position at the beginning of 2004. He replaces Sara Speicher from the USA, who moved to the UK end-November after 7 years with the Council. Before coming to the WCC, Belopopsky served as secretary-general of SYNDESMOS, the World Fellowship of Orthodox Youth. He has a degree in modern history from the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales, France.

Inter-religious dialogue is necessary alternative to extremism, says Iranian leader

Cf. WCC Press Information Info-03-16 of 4 December 2003

Ceremony commemorates ecumenical solidarity with Algeria

An Aurès Cedar, representing over one million trees planted in an ecumenical re-forestation effort following the Algerian fight for independence from France, will be the center of a commemorative ceremony taking place on

Orthodox Patriarchate affirms "costly" commitment to WCC

Cf. WCC Press Release PR-03-35 of 25 November 2003

Christmas message

By Konrad Raiser

AACC Assembly: WCC general secretaries highlight ecumenical vision and challenges

The vision at the heart of the ecumenical movement and the challenges it faces at the beginning of the 21st century in Africa were highlighted by both the outgoing and incoming general secretaries of the World Council of Churches (WCC) at the 8th Assembly of the All Africa Conferences of Churches (AACC) in Yaounde, Cameroon, on 24 November.

WCC general secretary's last official visit to a WCC member church before retirement

The last official visit of World Council of Churches (WCC) outgoing general secretary Rev. Dr Konrad Raiser to a WCC member church will be to the Ecumenical Patriarchate from 29 November to 3 December 2003.

Geneva international organizations host major world AIDS Day event

The World Council of Churches (WCC), UNAIDS , the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and the Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance (EAA), will gather together for the first time to mark World AIDS Day with a joint event on

December 2003

WCC delegation attends UN conference on climate change

Henri Tincq interviews Konrad Raiser

Following an invitation from the public information team of the World Council of Churches (WCC), Henri Tincq, who has been in charge of religious news at the prestigious French daily "Le Monde" since 1985, interviewed Rev. Dr Konrad Raiser. The interview took place in Geneva, on Wednesday, 29 October 2003, as Raiser approached the end of his term as general secretary of WCC. This interview can be freely reproduced. A high-resolution photograph is also available free of charge (see below).

EAPPI welcomes largest group of volunteers

Cf. WCC Press Release pr-03-34 of 10 November 2003

Following long civil war, hope for peace is growing in Sudan

Cf. WCC Press Update PU-03-43 of 13 November 2003

WCC film wins international festival prize

A film about Sierra Leone produced by the World Council of Churches (WCC) for Danish television won a prize as the best film in the inter-religious dialogue category at the International Festival of Cinema and Religion in Trento, Italy.