“The vision for mission and the many ministries of the Methodists in Brazil have deep value and impact for the people,” wrote Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, general secretary of the World Council of Churches (WCC), in a letter to the 20th General Council of the Methodist Church in Brazil on 8 July.
Tveit’s letter was read in plenary by WCC staff Dr Marcelo Schneider during the sixth day of the council held in Teresópolis, near Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
“The challenge before us is to continue to move together, without fear, with clear motivation in our living hope. You, members of the College of Bishops, participants of the 20th General Council, and all members of the Methodist Church in Brazil, are part of that vision,” wrote Tveit.
During the week-long meeting, the 254 delegates of the General Council evaluated the different areas of work of the church, launched a new National Missionary Plan and elected the 10 bishops that will form the leadership of the church.
"The General Council is always a milestone in the life of our church,” said Bishop Adonias Pereira do Lago, president of the College of Bishops. “Through our committed discipleship we reaffirm that we are part of God's work,” he added.
The history of the Methodists in Brazil started in 1860. The latest official data (2013) show that the Methodist Church in Brazil has 400,000 members. The report of the College of Bishops to the 20th Council registered a 20% increase in the total number of members.