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WCC general secretary congratulates Desmond Tutu on his 75th birthday

WCC general secretary congratulates Desmond Tutu on his 75th birthday

Archbishop Desmond Tutu

06 October 2006

"You have challenged and pushed us never to adjust to the powers that are, but always to discern the signs of God's coming kingdom and to act accordingly."

This is the way that World Council of Churches (WCC) general secretary Rev. Dr Samuel Kobia summarized the positive influence of Archbishop Desmond Tutu's life and work on the WCC and the ecumenical movement as a whole.

In a letter congratulating Tutu, who turns 75 tomorrow, Kobia recalls the Archbishop's interventions at the WCC 9th Assembly in Porto Alegre last February. "In Porto Alegre you reminded us that 'a united church is no optional extra'. Rather, you said, it is 'indispensable for the salvation of God's world'."

Participants at the WCC Assembly had the privilege to see and hear "the inspiring witness of a powerful preacher, the vibrant and exciting testimony of someone who continues to grow with the challenges he confronts, a man with a great heart, ice-breaking humour and a liberating message: an obedient disciple of Christ".

The letter also hails Tutu's role in helping the WCC "to play a decisive role in the struggle against apartheid" and afterwards in leading South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which "gave this fractured and broken world a model for overcoming the wounds of past evils and for creating space for healing and reconciliation".

Full text of Samuel Kobia's letter to Desmond Tutu available at:

www.oikoumene.org/index.php