World Council of Churches acting general secretary Rev. Prof. Dr Ioan Sauca sent joyful greetings via a video message to Focolare youth who are about to celebrate United World Week.
“The worldwide fellowship of churches stands in solidarity with you as we pray for healing and recovery of humanity and all of God’s creation, especially during this time of uncertainty and fear caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Sauca said. “In such circumstances, we realize all the more just how united we are as one humanity: we share the same fears, the same challenges, and the same yearning for the well-being of our one human family.”
The youth of Focolare reveal the true breadth and ambition of Chiara Lubich’s vision for the ecumenical movement: not simply to bridge ancient divides among Christians but also to live Christian discipleship in such a way as to heal the world, Sauca reflected.
“You are a gift to our communities,” he said. “Your passion and desire to change the world inspire and motivate the rest of us as we confront the realities of today.”
In ways big and small, a generation of young people is stepping up to meet the daunting challenges of climate change, economic inequality, and the needs of migrants and refugees, Sauca noted. “So, despite uncertainties and fear, ours is also a resurrection time of enormous opportunities to come together and serve one another, sisters and brothers,” Sauca said. “The task and call to work for peace are clear.”
The theme for the Focolare's United World Week, from 1-7 May is "In Time for Peace.” A global event will be held via videoconference on 2 May, followed by a virtual relay race, Run4Unity, across different time zones around the world, and dozens of regional events online around the world.
The Focolare youth will focus on understanding what it means to still be "in time for peace,” especially in this time of coronavirus. Using examples of closeness, fraternity and hope, the young people hope to give testimony of a universal family made up of brothers and sisters who come together in a moment of crisis. The young people are also collaborating with different groups who work to promote a united world.
WCC landing page: Coping with the Coronavirus