In a contribution to the Church of Sweden’s publication “150 Years of International Engagement,” World Council of Churches (WCC) general secretary Rev. Prof. Dr Jerry Pillay celebrates the church’s vital legacy and reflects on its evolving character.
As part of an “Inspirational Day” for the Swedish Mission Council held 30 January, Rev. Dr Kenneth Mtata, WCC programme director for Public Witness and Diakonia, shared reflections on “Faith in Democracy: Current challenges and opportunities from a global ecumenical perspective.”
Julia Rensberg, a passionate advocate for youth and Indigenous Sami communities from the Church of Sweden, took centre stage at the Faith Pavilion's side event on “Interfaith Youth Dialogue on Climate Justice, Promoting Resilience and Hope.”
A photo exhibit, “Every Picture Tells A Story,” opened in the Ecumenical Centre on 29 November, showcasing the work of Most Rev. Dr Martin Modéus, archbishop of the Church of Sweden and primate of Uppsala.
WCC progamme director for Public Witness and Diakonia Rev. Dr Kenneth Mtata was part of a panel reviewing and reflecting on the book "White saviourism in International Development,” by Themrise Khan et al, at the 2023 Gothenburg Book Fair.
The World Council of Churches (WCC) hosted Bishop Dr Jukka Keskitalo and Rev. Pekka Mustakallio from the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland, to discuss the ecumenical agenda of 2023 and the harvesting of the WCC 11th assembly, as well a group from the Centre for Ecumenism of the Protestant Church in Hesse and Nassau, and 21 ordinands from the Church of Sweden.
“Our two churches have more than 200 years of shared history in Europe and the United States. This full-communion agreement is one more sign of the beloved community that we so need in these times. Our partnership in addressing the challenges of climate change, supporting refugees, and racial justice binds us even more deeply to worldwide ecumenical efforts,” said Most Rev. Michael Curry, presiding bishop and primate of The Episcopal Church.
Twenty-nine Swedish students from Athens, Milano, and Sofia visited the World Council of Churches (WCC) on 24 February, receiving a guided tour, participating in singing sessions led by Rev. Dr Mikie Roberts, and receiving an overview of the work of the WCC, Lutheran World Federation and ACT Alliance.
World Council of Churches (WCC) acting general secretary Rev. Prof. Dr Ioan Sauca and WCC general secretary-elect Rev. Prof. Dr Jerry Pillay expressed gratitude for the new Church of Sweden archbishop and primate of Uppsala Dr Martin Modéus.
World Council of Churches (WCC) acting general secretary Rev. Prof. Dr Ioan Sauca expressed gratitude for the work of Archbishop Dr Antje Jackelén, primate of the Church of Sweden, as she moves on from her years of service.
By rights, it should have been Africa. The World Council of Churches’ (WCC) First Assembly had been held in Europe (Amsterdam), the second in North America (Evanston, USA), the third in Asia (New Delhi). Hopes were raised that Africa would be the next continent to host the council. But questions arose concerning acts of violence and military conflicts in Africa throughout the 1960s, from the Biafran region in Nigeria to Zanzibar and Eritrea, from Algeria to Mozambique and Rhodesia. And so the Fourth Assembly returned to the “safety” of Europe, to Uppsala in Sweden. In one of history’s ironies, Soviet tanks would roll into Prague one month after the assembly’s close.
The Fifth International Conference on Receptive Ecumenism was held in Sigtuna, Sweden on 27-30 June, exploring the theme “Transforming Ecumenism – listen to what the Spirit is saying to the churches.” (Rev 2:7)
The World Council of Churches (WCC) and International Partnership on Religion and Sustainable Development (PaRD) co-hosted a hybrid event on 2 June at Stockholm+50. Exploring the theme “Climate Action and Water for Life towards Creation Justice!” the event reflected on the current scenario of the climate emergency and global water crisis which are interconnected and impact each other as well as the sustainability of the earth.
An interfaith statement developed at Stockholm+50, “Faith Values and Reach - Contribution to Environmental Policy,” was signed by representatives of various faith-based organizations and Indigenous cultures across the world, including the World Council of Churches, and directed to the governments, UN entities, civil society, and all stakeholders of the “Stockholm+50” processes.