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Looking back and ahead

Looking back and ahead

Uppsala Cathedral, Sweden. Photo: Albin Hillert/WCC

31 October 2018

In 1968, the ecumenical movement took an important step forward when its commitment to global justice and peace was manifested at the World Council of Churches (WCC) general assembly in Uppsala, Sweden.

Half a century later, the Ecumenical Weekend, which kicks off on Saturday (All Saints Day) in the very same Swedish city, will not only celebrate 50 years of global ecumenism, it also raises urgent issues and new challenges facing the ecumenical movement.

Under the same theme as in 1968: “Behold, I make all things new!”, ten different seminars will be held on 3 November, where some of today’s most pertinent ecumenical issues will be discussed, such as racism, inter-religious dialogue, migration and ecological sustainability.

“Looking back helps us look ahead. 1968 was an eventful year when a progressive ecumenical movement took shape based on a better understanding of the Christian churches’ mission in the world. Today, isolation and polarization are challenges to ecumenism. The question we face is: How can we stay aligned in a common mission in a world which needs unity and humanity?”, explains Karin Wiborn, general secretary of Christian Council of Sweden, which co-hosts the event together with Church of Sweden and Uniting Church in Sweden.

After Sunday’s morning prayer, WCC moderator, Dr Agnes Abuom will reflect more on today’s ecumenical challenges specifically. After that, WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit will preach at a public ecumenical prayer service in Uppsala Cathedral, led by Sweden’s Archbishop Dr Antje Jackelén.

Around 150 specially invited guests from churches and faith organizations in Sweden are expected to attend the ecumenical weekend.

For accreditation to Saturday’s seminars, please contact CCS press secretary Mikael Stjernberg, immediately.

Accreditation also applies to photographers wishing to cover Sunday’s prayer service in the cathedral.

More information about the Ecumenical Weekend (in Swedish, Christian Council of Sweden)

WCC and ACT Alliance Joint Day of Reflection on Ecumenical Diakonia and Sustainable Development

WCC Executive Committee meeting, Uppsala 2018

Tveit to ACT Assembly: with hope, churches can act together (WCC press release of 29 October 2018)

Archbishop Antje Jackelén opens ACT Assembly in Uppsala (WCC press release of 29 October 2018)