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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.

“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.”

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.’ ”

Women bishops offer candid look at what drives their leadership

Bishop Mary Ann Swenson, a retired United Methodist bishop from the USA, has spent her career voicing the need for a church that includes all people, regardless of race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and gender identity. And, throughout her career, she’s never been afraid to say that out loud.

WCC condemns attack at Hanukkah celebration in New York City

The World Council of Churches (WCC) condemned an attack on a Hanukkah celebration at a rabbi´s home north of New York City, on 28 December, stabbing and wounding five people. Several state and local officials have described the location of stabbing as a synagogue.

Bishop Elizabeth Eaton: “No longer will we stay silent”

Elizabeth Eaton is presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). On 8 August, the ELCA adopted a resolution to encourage church-wide participation in the World Council of Churches Thursdays in Black campaign for a world free from rape and violence.

“African at Heart” conference set for USA in November

Pan-African Women of Faith, Bread for the World, the World Council of Churches (WCC), Pan-African Women’s Ecumenical Empowerment Network, Pan-African Diaspora Women’s Association, African Union, and All Africa Conference of Churches have announced plans for a November conference as well as the rollout of a social media campaign aimed at promoting profiles advocating justice and equity.

Churches called to “break new ground” in gender justice

World Council of Churches (WCC) representatives involved in the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women say its outcomes reflect many of the pressures affecting efforts towards gender equality globally and call for churches to be active agents for justice in the lead-up to a critical UN review in 2020.

A tribute to Rev. Dr Rena Joyce Weller Karefa-Smart

The life of Rev. Dr Rena Joyce Weller Karefa-Smart is being remembered and commended this week by the WCC fellowship after her passing last week. Karefa-Smart was the first Pan African woman to graduate in 1945 from Yale Divinity School. She was a champion for global ecumenism over the course of a long and distinguished career. An attendee of the first WCC Assembly, she was also a procession leader and author of the liturgies at the second WCC Assembly in Evanston, Illinois (USA).

Forum on Modern Slavery: “Liberate them from tyranny and exploitation”

In an opening address at a Forum on Modern Slavery in Istanbul on 7 January, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew spoke on “Awareness, Action and Impact.” After many centuries of progress and advancement, we still live in a world where injustice and slavery continue to thrive, and where human dignity is exchanged for the sole purpose of greed, gain, and profit, reflected Bartholomew.