It is a great honour to be together with you and celebrate 175 years of the work in mission and the establishment of VID. Congratulations on your 175th anniversary. On behalf of the World Council of Churches and the entire fellowship of churches, some of whom you have very close relations, we wish you a blessed anniversary. Looking back into the history and journey of the VID Specialized University, we can observe stages and processes to build offerings, build capacity and improve quality of education that could address the needs of the time such as missiology for mission candidates and theology. This includes the recent merger of different campuses and reconfiguration of VID.
The world and not least the church is looking for competent, skilled people of integrity to serve in different fields. This is a concern you have and continue to excel in as you also open doors to the wider community/society and church both in Norway and abroad. The quality of education and the position you occupy among other educational institutions shows that your impact has been far reaching. Some of the church leaders in the south have gone through your campuses. Many women and men dedicated their time and lives to realize the vision of VID today, for which we thank God. This is a vision of engaging in worldwide mission and making a contribution to ecumenism. The place you occupy within and among education institutions indicates that you have a far-reaching impact.
Since the establishment 175 years ago, you have engaged in voluntary work virtually in every corner of the world. Christian sisters and brothers driven by an unshakable faith in God lent their hands, shared knowledge and committed themselves to make the world a better place.
From the 19th century you have demonstrated the power of faith, hope and love while adapting to the dynamic and ever-changing contexts and needs.
We, the World Council of Churches, congratulate VID Specialized University for 175 years and the general secretary Rev. Dr. Olav Fykse Tveit sends his message of congratulations. He has fond memories of how his parents contributed to the School of Mission as well as relatives who trained here and went on to serve in different places. The WCC general secretary stated that: “The school represents the shared commitment to participate in God’s mission and in the one ecumenical movement”. May the almighty God bless your efforts and guide you as you pursue this noble vision and as you pilgrim towards an enlightened world with peace and justice.
Dr Agnes Abuom,
moderator of the World Council of Churches Central Committee