Christian Perspectives on Human Dignity and Human Rights

Part of the international conference held on 9-12 April in Wuppertal, Germany, the online panel discussion on 11 April will reflect on the challenges for a common vision of churches on human rights today, bringing together biblical, theological and practical perspectives on human dignity.

Ukraine refugees family

Vama Siret border crossing, connecting northeast Romania with Ukraine. Following the invasion by Russian military in Ukraine starting on 24 February 2022, more than half a million Ukrainian refugees, mostly women and children, have fled across the border into Romania.


In 1948 in the aftermath of the Second World War, the United Nations adopted the Universal Declaration on Human Rights. In the same year, the World Council of Churches (WCC) was founded. Since then, the ecumenical movement has actively promoted international human rights law as an instrument for protecting the God-given human dignity of every human being.

Churches and faith-based organizations associated with the WCC have for many decades advocated especially for vulnerable people who have been victims of human rights violations. In the current global context, escalating conflicts, tensions, divisions and discriminatory nationalism once again threaten grave peril for the physical security and human dignity and rights of communities and individuals around the world.

A study process initiated in 2020 by the World Council of Churches, United Evangelical Mission and Evangelical Church in Germany aims to provide a space for ecumenical reflection on the relationship between human dignity and human rights from biblical, theological and victimsperspectives.

The preliminary results of this study process will be shared and discussed in an international conference on 9-12 April in Wuppertal and online. The online panel discussion will reflect on the preliminary results of the study process, providing insights into the topics discussed at the conference.

The livestream of the public session of the conference will be available on the WCC YouTube channel, accessible via https://www.oikoumene.org/live.

When: 11 April 2022, 13.30 – 15.30 CET

Where: follow online at www.oikoumene.org/live

Words of welcome:

  • Rev. Prof. Dr Ioan Sauca (acting general secretary of the WCC)
  • Dr h.c. Annette Kurschus (chair of the Council of the EKD)
  • Rev. Volker Martin Dally (general secretary of UEM)


  • Natallia Vasilevich (Centre Ecumena, Belarus)
  • Rev. Dr Kenneth Mtata (Zimbabwe Council of Churches)
  • Dr Mathews George Chunakara (Christian Conference of Asia)
  • Prof. Dr Heiner Bielefeldt (FAU, Germany)
  • Rev. Protopresbyter Dr. Nicolas Kazarian (Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America)
  • Rev. Ute Hedrich (EKD, Germany)
  • Peter Prove (CCIA, World Council of Churches)

Moderation: Rev. Dr Jochen Motte (UEM, Germany)


Read more: Churches will share perspectives on human dignity amidst escalating conflicts (WCC press release, 4 April 2022)