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Ecumenical statement on migration received by European Commission

The advocacy statement of ecumenical organisations responding to the new EU Migrant Pact and the situation of migrants and refugees in Europe was received 25 September in the European Commission offices in Brussels. The statement was addressed to Vangelis Demiris, cabinet member of the vice president of the commission Margaritis Schinas, who is coordinating the commission’s work on the New Pact on Migration and Asylum. Dr Jørgen Skov Sørensen, general secretary of the Conference of European Churches, and Dr Torsten Moritz, general secretary of the Churches' Commission for Migrants in Europe, delivered the statement to Demiris, who is responsible for the dialogue with the churches and faith-based organisations.

Erich Weingartner: “Peace needs an emotional bond” on the Korean Peninsula

Erich Weingartner, who previously helped lead the World Council of Churches (WCC) Commission of the Churches on International Affairs, has also represented CanKor, a Canadian interactive resource on North Korea. From the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada, he was also founding head of the Food Aid Liaison Unit of the World Food Programme.

WCC expresses sadness, solidarity after Notre Dame fire

After a large fire broke out on 15 April at the Notre Dame cathedral, World Council of Churches (WCC) general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit expressed shock over the damage to one the most famous landmarks in Paris, and the seat of the archbishop of Paris.

Prayer service hails churches’ involvement in the fight against inequality

“Inequality hurts us all and goes against God’s vision of life in abundance for every human being”, said Athena Peralta, World Council of Churches (WCC) programme executive for economic and ecological justice, at a prayer service on the occasion of the Week of Action to Fight Inequality, held at the Ecumenical Centre in Geneva, on 21 January.

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).

WCC welcomes new staff

The World Council of Churches (WCC) has made several new appointments this year, welcoming programme executives, a programme director, and a new dean of the Bossey Ecumenical Institute.

Konrad Raiser shares ecumenical journey of transformation

Rev. Dr Konrad Raiser has been on an ecumenical journey for most of his adult life, which spans 80 years. The former WCC general secretary relates some of this pilgrimage in his newest publication, “The Challenge of Transformation: An Ecumenical Journey.” On 5 February, shortly after Raiser’s birthday, ecumenical experts from different generations, confessions and continents met in Geneva to discuss the newest publication by the man who led the WCC from 1993 to 2003.

Ending statelessness in Europe is high priority for realizing human rights

A regional conference held 5-6 September in Berlin allowed participants to look at statelessness in the European context through the lenses of human rights and development.

The conference, with the theme “Statelessness in the European Context: Prevention, Reduction and Protection,” approached statelessness as an issue that is often invisible even though it occurs in so many countries around the world.

What is done for children, impacts all community

Churches can make a huge difference in children’s lives and therefore improve the whole community, strongly believes Frederique Seidel, World Council of Churches (WCC) special advisor on children’s rights. To help the churches in their efforts in improving the wellbeing of children, WCC has published this year the invitation and resource for churches, “Churches’ Commitments to Children”.