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“Growing in faith like a cedar of Lebanon” - International Ecumenical Youth Meeting in Beirut

From 23-25 March, 1,600 young people from 43 countries came together in Beirut, Lebanon with the brothers of the ecumenical, monastic community of Taizé (France). Middle Eastern and Western Christians discovered how fruitful and stimulating an ecumenical exchange can be.

WCC general secretary visits Los Angeles with a focus on love, unity

World Council of Churches (WCC) general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit was visiting Los Angeles this week from 30 March to 4 April, preaching at the Hollywood United Methodist Church, delivering a lecture at Loyola Marymount University, and meeting with various ecumenical organizations and groups.

From Conflict to Communion: The future of Christians together in the world

Catholics, Lutherans, Methodists, Anglicans and Reformed discern further steps towards deeper ecclesial communion and common witness during a consultation at the University of Notre Dame in Indiana, United States from 26 to 28 March.

WCC general secretary: “We believe in God’s love”

On 31 March at the Hollywood United Methodist Church, in a sermon entitled “The Two Brothers,” World Council of Churches (WCC) general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit reflected on the biblical parable of the prodigal son, among the most shared and well-known stories in the Bible.

WCC Central Committee leadership meets in Geneva

The leadership of the World Council of Churches (WCC) Central Committee is meeting on 27-28 March at the Ecumenical Centre in Geneva.

Gathering recalls Ecumenical Assembly that mobilised dissent in East Germany

A conference in Berlin has recalled how in 1989 an ecumenical assembly mobilised dissent in the former East Germany in the run-up to a peaceful revolution that led to the collapse of communism and the end of the Berlin Wall.

Latest issue of Current Dialogue tackles diverse themes

The latest issue of Current Dialogue tackles diverse themes ranging from Jain approaches to religious plurality to the elimination of nuclear weapons. Marrying theory to practice, it seeks to throw light on the foundations for interreligious engagement of particular religious traditions while also highlighting the various challenges that communities of faith face in contemporary contexts across the world.

Churches called to “break new ground” in gender justice

World Council of Churches (WCC) representatives involved in the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women say its outcomes reflect many of the pressures affecting efforts towards gender equality globally and call for churches to be active agents for justice in the lead-up to a critical UN review in 2020.

Corporate taxation, reparations important for just economy, workshop shows

“Multinational corporations have to pay their fair share of taxes or else we will have dug out all our copper and left a great hole in the ground for nothing”, stated Rev. Dr Suzanne Matale, from Zambia, during a workshop on just taxation and reparations held in Durban, South Africa, 16-20 March.

Leaders of five Christian World Communions attend ecumenical prayer service

(LWF Communication) – An ecumenical prayer service in the Basilica of the Sacred Heart at the University of Notre Dame in Indiana, United States, marked the opening of a four-day consultation of five Christian World Communions discussing the historic importance of the Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification (JDDJ) and its impact on the search for full, visible unity of the church.

Muslim from Canada and Indian Christian share sun rising over Lake Geneva praying together

The Shia Muslim student from Canada, the Presbyterian Christian student from India and some of their companions reluctantly set off for an early run on a chilly morning to the Geneva lakeside little knowing what sunrise would bring.

Shabbat dinner ‘helps humanize two sides of the story’

On 15 March, a group of Ecumenical accompaniers from the WCC were invited to share Shabbat dinner with the Kol HaNeshama congregation in Jerusalem.

“Voice of Antioch" TV Channel celebrates inaugural broadcast

On 25 March, His Holiness Moran Mor Ignatius Aphrem II, Patriarch of Antioch and All the East and Supreme Head of the Universal Syrian Orthodox Church, officially blessed and opened Suboro TV, which will offer religious, cultural and social programs that aim to fulfill the spiritual needs of Syriac people.

WCC contributes to learning platform on freedom of religion

The World Council of Churches has published “Freedom of Religion or Belief: A guide to biblical insights”, as part of online training offered through the Freedom of Religion or Belief Learning Platform.

‘Not a page in a book’ – accompaniers hear Palestinians’ testimonies from Ma’alul village

Ma’alul, a Palestinian village destroyed in the 1948 Arab-Israeli war, saw a visit by ecumenical accompaniers in mid-March. “I would have liked to invite you to a real home, not just as a refugee,” said Jad Saba Yusef Salem as he received the group of accompaniers to the village. Today, 95-year-old Salem is one of few remaining survivors from the 75 families who used to live in the village back in 1948.

Consultation in Brazil focuses on "Towards a Global Vision of the Church"

On 18-22 March, the World Council of Churches (WCC) Faith and Order Commission gathered at Faculdade Unida de Vitoria in Brazil for a consultation entitled “Towards a Global Vision of the Church”.

Film festival awards “Compañeros – La noche de 12 años”

At the 33rd Festival International de Films de Fribourg, held 15-23 March, the Ecumenical Jury awarded “Compañeros – La noche de 12 años” (A Twelve-Year Night), directed by Álvaro Brechner, a prize of 5,000 CHF donated by the Swiss organizations Lenten Offering and Bread for All.

Funeral celebrates life of Rev. Robina Winbush

A funeral on 22 March celebrated the life of Rev. Robina Winbush, a World Council of Churches (WCC) Central and Executive Committee member known for her fierce advocacy for justice.

Diverse group discusses moving beyond tolerance to empathy at UN side event

A diverse group of Christian and Muslim believers and international diplomats met at a side event at the United Nations in Geneva in a celebration of diversity with key speakers shunning extremism and committing to tolerance as a gateway to peace.

Churches call for support amid devastation caused by Cyclone Idai

More than 100,000 people are still stranded from massive flooding caused by a devastating cyclone and heavy rainfall in Mozambique and neighbouring southeastern African countries. As the numbers of victims and people displaced are still unfolding, churches in the region are calling everyone to join in prayers for the wellbeing and protection of those affected.

Tanzania: A long-standing issue, with potential for change

What if HIV were just a virus, and not also a taboo? This week in Tanzania, religious leaders gathered to address stigma and discrimination related to HIV.

WCC offers insights at Commission on the Status of Women

From joint statements, to reflections, to exchanging ideas, the World Council of Churches (WCC) is engaging in the sixty-third session of the Commission on the Status of Women at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.

European religion academy examines role of ecumenical journals in ecumenical history

Journals have played a significant role in the history of the ecumenical movement, according to an event held during the European Academy of Religion in Bologna, Italy.

Rev. Henrik Grape reflects on a broader understanding of climate change

Rev. Henrik Grape is the coordinator of the World Council of Churches Working Group on Climate Change.

International youth meeting to be convened in Beirut

The Churches of Lebanon, Middle East Council of Churches, and the Taizé community are holding an International Ecumenical Youth Meeting in Beirut from 22-26 March.