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WCC central committee statement on sexual exploitation, abuse and harassment calls churches to challenge injustice, build awareness

The World Council of Churches (WCC) central committee, in a public statement, called upon WCC member churches and ecumenical partners to condemn or reiterate their condemnation of sexual and gender-based violence and of any form of violence against women, children and vulnerable people; to declare such rejection of the equal dignity of all people and such violence a sin; and to implement guidelines for the prevention of sexual exploitation, abuse and harassment.”

Transformative Spiritualities for the Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace

The Churches of the World Council of Churches have been on a “Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace”—together with people of goodwill—since they met for their assembly in Busan in 2013. Building peace with justice has been at the heart of the ecumenical movement since its beginnings. It reflects the call of the churches in a wounded world caused by systemic injustice—racism, sexism, xenophobia, economic exploitation, and violence among humans and against nature, our “Mother”. While political advocacy, theological reflections, and ethical orientation have been high on the agenda of the World Council of Churches, the spiritual dimension of a “just peace” has not always received the same attention.

Starting a Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace, the WCC began to focus intentionally on “transformative spiritualities” in order to (re-)discover the strength of the many and diverse faith communities around the globe. What is the well of that distinct power to resist evil with good, to transform injustices into a life of dignity for all, to heal broken relations – including Mother nature? And what are some of the spiritual practices that inspire communities on that “sacred walk”?

This volume provides a selection of reflections on those transformative spiritualities, from Indigenous perspectives to women’s voices, from Black communities´ to campesino/as´ struggles, from specific Christian traditions to sister faiths. It is that common well we all drink from—inviting readers to participate in that promise that a life in peace and justice is, in fact, possible for all.
 

On Korean Peninsula, “the churches and the country need reconciliation and unity”

Rev. Dr Hyunju Bae represents the Presbyterian Church of Korea on the World Council of Churches central and executive committees and serves on the WCC Gender Advisory Group. She is a former professor of New Testament Studies at the Busan Presbyterian University, Republic of Korea, and now a co-president of the Korea Christian Environmental Movement Solidarity for Integrity of Creation.  Below, she reflects on a recent prayer vigil for peace, as well as other ecumenical activities in South Korea.

WCC visit to Italy harvests examples of the churches’ unconditional support to refugees and migrants

The Central Mediterranean route is the overseas crossing from North Africa to Italy. Those migrating on this route generally aim to reach Italian shores but leave from a variety of North African countries bordering the Mediterranean. Though in past years most migrants have departed from Libya, which is a destination for migrants as well as a transit country, there is also a proportionally small but growing number of departures from Tunisia, Egypt, and Algeria.

African women church leaders: “Where is there justice today?”

As African women church leaders gathered last week for an inaugural “Ecumenical Women’s Initiative for Leadership and Learning”, they lamented grave injustices, celebrated women pioneers, and nurtured a spirit of solidarity they hope will blaze a global trail for the future.