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Rev. Michael Blair: “Collaborate in the healing and transformation of the world”

Our series of interviews with Thursdays in Black ambassadors highlights those who are playing a vital role in increasing the impact of our collective call for a world without rape and violence. Rev. Michael Blair is general secretary of the General Council for The United Church of Canada. He is also a member of the World Council of Churches Commission on World Mission and Evangelism.

Bible study addresses church identity in pandemic

Among the massive social dislocations caused by the coronavirus pandemic, perhaps none is as plaintive as those to churches. Around the world, church gatherings, liturgies, fellowship, and service projects have been canceled or postponed or migrated online, precisely when Christian communities and those who rely on them need them most.

Rev. Dr Angelique Walker-Smith: From a Christian Pan African perspective, “who writes the stories?”

Rev. Dr Angelique Walker-Smith is senior associate for Pan African and Orthodox Church Engagement at Bread for the World. She also serves on the World Council of Churches (WCC) central committee. She recently participated in a rally and march in Washington, DC, where thousands gathered to commemorate the 57th anniversary of the March on Washington in 1963 that included Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have A Dream" speech.

U.S. veterans work for peace on divided Korean peninsula

Throughout 2020, the World Council of Churches (WCC), together with the National Council of Churches in Korea, has been observing a Global Prayer Campaign,“We Pray, Peace Now, End the War.” As part of the campaign, the WCC is sharing personal stories and interviews that inspire others to work for peace. The story below features the perspective of U.S. war veterans, all of whom are also featured in video interviews.

Joint message calls for healing wounds and a shared future for the Korean Peninsula

A Joint Ecumenical Peace Message for the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the start of the Korean War was publicly delivered on 22 June during a live-streamed event. Co-sponsored by churches and councils of churches around the world, especially from countries that participated in the Korean War, the message describes the Korean War as an “appallingly destructive conflict” after which no peace treaty was ever concluded.

Metropolitan Nicholovos: “We cannot afford to be bystanders”

In a lively online discussion entitled “Breaking Down the Walls,” the Northeast American Diocese of the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church explored the racial injustices in our society, how racism plays a role in the Indian American community, and what Orthodox Christians can do.
Sunil Kurian, an attorney who resides in Philadelphia (USA) moderated the discussion, saying: “These are troubling times. We as Orthodox Christians must break down the walls of racism that separate us.”

“United Methodists Stand Against Racism” campaign offers array of actions

In a campaign called simply “United Methodists Stand Against Racism,” the United Methodist Church is offering an array of worship opportunities, prayer gatherings, practical suggestions and other resources.

“We recognize racism as a sin,” reads a statement introducing the campaign. “We commit to challenging unjust systems of power and access.”

Council for World Mission releases “I Can’t Breathe” statement inviting all to confront injustice

The Council for World Mission published a statement, entitled “I Can’t Breathe,” reflecting that black and minority ethnic communities, as well as migrant workers, are treated as cheap and disposable labour, frequently denied equal rights, wages and dignity. “COVID-19 reveals the pandemic of inequality that is all around us,” reads the statement. “These statistics and realities frame lives, deaths and a system.”

Circle of Concerned African Women Theologians: ‘Mama, Mama... I Can’t Breathe!’

The Circle of Concerned African Women Theologians published a statement entitled “Mama, Mama…I Can’t Breathe!” that expresses heartbreak over the death of George Floyd at the hands of a policeman.

“Floyd pleaded for his life to no avail until he finally succumbed to death,” reads the statement. “The community has been pleading, ‘Black Lives Matter.’ ”

Churches amplify urgent calls to address violent racism in US

As protests erupted in more than 30 cities across the US in the wake of the death of George Floyd, churches in the US collectively expressed anger combined with a clarion call for a change—once and for all—in a nation that has tolerated violent racism for too long.