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Churches in southern Africa stand against violence, xenophobia

Churches across southern Africa are publicly saying #EnoughIsEnough,” with many denominations and congregations continuing to issue strong statements, arrange special prayer events, and speak out against rising levels of violence.

Both the Dutch Reformed Church and the Uniting Presbyterian Church in Southern Africa (UPCSA) have been discussing gender justice and how to keep the momentum going on the unprecedented public demand for change.

WCC seminar in Mozambique shows vital role of diakonia

The last of three capacity-building seminars on Human Resources and Church Leadership for Diakonia and Development took place in Maputo, Mozambique, 18-20 June. This most recent seminar was for Portuguese speakers in Africa, with participants coming mainly from Angola and Mozambique. The first two seminars - for French and English speakers respectively - were held in May in Cotonou, Bénin, and Nairobi, Kenya.

Rev. Frank Chikane: Working together to heal wounds of conflict

‘Walking, praying and working together’ was the theme of Pope Francis’ 21 June visit to Geneva to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the World Council of Churches (WCC). Among those listening to the Pope's words was Pentecostal pastor Rev. Frank Chikane, one of the leaders of the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa.

#WCC70: Churches as “freedom agents”

In 2018 we celebrate the 70th anniversary of the World Council of Churches. In order to create a lively firsthand account of the ecumenical fellowship and of our shared journey, member churches have contributed stories of people, events, achievements and even failures, all of which have deepened our collective search for Christian unity. This story was written by Olle Eriksson, a Namibian who worked for 35 years (1968 – 2003) with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Namibia, Finnish Evangelical Lutheran Mission and Lutheran World Federation.

Ecumenical groups join in UN forum on business and human rights in Geneva

The huge impacts of businesses on the communities in which they operate often bring benefits, but companies can disregard and even harm people’s rights in pursuit of economic gain. The WCC, ACT Alliance and the Lutheran World Federation hosted a side event at the 6th United Nations Forum on Business and Human Rights in Geneva on 28 November, in this context.

South African church leaders appeal for calm ahead of elections

With less than a week before hotly contested local elections, church leaders in South Africa have appealed for calm and asked political leaders of all political parties to help contain dissent. The run-up to the elections on 3 August has been marred by recurrent bouts of violence, intimidation and even political assassinations.

Tveit in South Africa: “ We know. We dare. We can.”

Many people were gathered at the Orlando Stadium in Johannesburg, South Africa on 11 June. To remember, to continue the walk never finished on 16 June 1976, when hundreds of young people were killed by apartheid police and soldiers after student uprisings. Today, 40 years later, representatives of the victims and of the conscripted soldiers walked together for justice, peace and reconciliation.

40 years after Soweto youth uprising, disillusion reigns

Forty years after pupils in South Africa’s largest black township, Soweto, took to the streets to protest an inferior education system and set in motion the demise of apartheid, the release of Nelson Mandela and democracy, disillusion has replaced hope.

Tveit meets peace-builder Tutu on way to South Africa reconciliation consultation

On his way to a Peace-building and Reconciliation Consultation in Johannesburg, the World Council of Churches (WCC) general secretary stopped off to visit South African Nobel Peace Prize laureate Desmond Tutu.

WCC general secretary, Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, went to Cape Town to talk with Archbishop Emeritus Tutu, the former leader of the Anglican church during the turbulent apartheid days.