Receiving the news that Pope Francis has appointed Cardinal Peter Turkson as president of the newly created dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, the World Council of Churches (WCC) expressed expectation to cooperation with the new structure, as it relates to several dimensions of work and cooperation with the Roman Catholic Church worldwide.
In a letter to Turkson on 5 September, WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit wrote that the WCC knows Cardinal Turkson from his committed work for justice and peace, and looks forward to further cooperation with him in his expanded mandate. “I am personally very pleased with the development of relationships in the last couple of years, especially remembering the days during the Climate Change Conference in Paris and the following meetings we had in Rome and Davos, and also the meeting we recently had in Munich in July with the Focolare movement.”
The new dicastery will incorporate the pontifical councils of Justice and Peace, Cor Unum (meaning “one heart” or “one way”), Health Care Workers, and Migrants and Itinerant Peoples. Turkson, who is from Ghana, is currently president of the pontifical council for Justice and Peace.
“The world is waiting for cooperation and common witness among the churches that is rooted in our theological convictions regarding the unity of the Church, of the human family and of all creation,” wrote Tveit. “This was demonstrated not least by the positive echo of many in the world to the churches’ common celebration of the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation, and the Time for Creation.”
The new dicastery will begin its work on 1 January 2017.