Tveit reflected on how the WCC central committee is coming together online to address the effects of COVID-19, and to discern how to take the next steps together.
“Together we mourn with our member churches who have lost significant numbers of their members and many leaders,” he said. “Some of you have lost your colleagues, friends and family members.”
Tveit added: “The way forward we find by believing more than what we see.”
To work, he said, is to be ambassadors for Christ. “Your work is a holy calling to show how God in Jesus Christ has made a difference and reconciled the world with God,” he said. “The need for multilateral, faith based, justice-seeking and hope-creating work is even greater than before.”
Tveit also expressed his thanks and admiration to WCC leadership and colleagues for their resilience in continuing the holy call of the ecumenical movement in this very critical time. “You continue to share the love of Christ through your work and your communication in many new forms,” he said. “The ministry of reconciliation bringing justice and righteousness has not become obsolete, it has not been terminated, it has not lost its urgency. It is more needed than ever.”
We all need an ecumenical movement of love, Tveit concluded. “We all need the comfort of God through one another,” he said. “I thank you for the richness of relationships and experiences of Christ’s love you gave to me and my family during my time as general secretary.”
The World Council of Churches central committee will convene via video conference from 23-29 June to prepare for the 11th WCC Assembly, taking place in 2022 in Karlsruhe, Germany under the theme “Christ’s love moves the world to reconciliation and unity.” The WCC governing body will also address business matters and strengthen the WCC fellowship through sharing and prayer.