Work plans are provided on seven intervention areas: diet, physical exercise, tobacco, alcohol, mental health, tuberculosis, COVID-19 and other health issues. A monitoring and evaluation framework and guidance on how to address other emerging health issues are also provided.
Building on the WCC’s early engagement in the Primary Health Care movement, and supporting the World Health Organisation’s healthy settings approach, the WCC’s Health-Promoting Churches programme is an opportunity to strengthen existing efforts in health ministry in churches in a coherent and evidence-based manner.
A sustainable health ministry will ensure that:
• The church is a place of health education. Knowledge is power, and the church is a safe and effective space to provide critical health education from medical, social, and biblical perspectives and address myths and misinformation.
• The church is a place of practical action. This handbook will support churches in running a health ministry based on mutual loving care and accountability so that Christians can take concrete actions together toward healthy lifestyles as individuals, families, and communities.
• The church is a place for advocacy and care for creation. The theology of health and healing calls the church to act beyond individual and family health concerns and bring the healing
ministry into the political, social, environmental, and economic arenas. This handbook provides a guide for churches to identify, analyze, and approach these policy, systems, and environmental issues.
• The church is a place of empowerment for public witness. Every Christian is called to be salt and light for the world. The church is a place where individual Christians are empowered to be that salt and light in their areas of influence. Christians, in whatever personal or official capacity, are called to make decisions that promote life and testify to the lordship of Christ over all creation.
WHO fully supports WCC in this endeavour of promoting health and preventing disease through churches around the world.
Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus
Director-General, World Health Organization
This valuable handbook bears witness to a holistic comprehension of healing and health, providing a forceful tool for churches to join together in order to offer an effective common healing ministry to the world.
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew
I strongly support this excellent, innovative and highly practical resource that provides a roadmap to enable churches to become effective and transformative healing and health-giving communities, in the realities of the 21st century.
Professor John Wyatt, President, Christian Medical Fellowship, UK;
Emeritus Professor of Neonatal Paediatrics, University College London
"Health was central to our Lord’s ministry, and the Church’s healing ministry comes like balm for our deep wounds. Read it, and be healed by the journey that Dr Makoka asks us to take.”
Most Rev. Dr Thabo Makgoba, Archbishop of Cape Town