Commission of the Churches on International Affairs 57th meeting in Brisbane, Australia, February 2020. Photo: Ivars Kupcis/WCC

Commission of the Churches on International Affairs

The CCIA provides a platform for information-sharing and joint advocacy on critical situations and on opportunities to support initiatives for peacemaking, justice and overcoming poverty.

The Commission of the Churches on International Affairs (CCIA) advises the WCC on critical situations in the world and on opportunities to support initiatives for peacemaking and justice. The commission helps the WCC identify challenges to the churches and guide them in shaping a coherent ecumenical response.

CCIA offers an ecumenical forum for addressing national and international problems to WCC member churches, their agencies and other ecumenical partners. The commission also provides a platform for information-sharing and joint advocacy to churches and others engaged in struggles for justice and peace.

Other tasks of the CCIA include advising on public policy and advocacy, analysis of systemic issues that underlie injustice and social transformation, promoting a peaceful and reconciling role for religion in conflicts, as well as promoting inter-religious dialogue as a framework for community building, faith sharing and understanding.

The Commission of the Churches on International Affairs dates back to 1946. Having consultative status within the United Nations Organization, the commission played a significant role in formulating the religious liberty clauses in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948.

CCIA’s scope was much extended in 2006, when it was merged with three other WCC advisory bodies: the Commission of the Churches on Diakonia and Development (CCDD), the Commission of the Churches on Justice, Peace and the Integrity of Creation (CJPC), and the Reference Group on Inter-religious Relations and Dialogue (IRRD).

The Commission of the Churches on International affairs (CCIA) comprises 35 people nominated by churches and regional ecumenical organizations to advise the WCC. These men and women from around the world are church leaders, pastors, laypersons and academics with expertise in areas relevant to the commission. They usually meet once a year.

Working groups on specific topics act between commission meetings, providing the WCC staff and governing bodies with timely advice, despite the complexity of issues. Working groups are not established on a permanent basis but respond to urgent challenges faced by the WCC and the ecumenical movement.

Currently, there are eight working groups:

  • Africa
  • Economic justice
  • Human rights and freedom of religion or belief
  • Middle East
  • Nuclear disarmament
  • Reform of international governance
  • Religion and violence
  • Statelessness, refugees & migration.
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Peter Prove

Director of the WCC Commission of the Churches on International Affairs

Email: Peter.Prove@wcc-coe.org

phone: +41 22 7916031