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Churches amplify urgent calls to address violent racism in US

As protests erupted in more than 30 cities across the US in the wake of the death of George Floyd, churches in the US collectively expressed anger combined with a clarion call for a change—once and for all—in a nation that has tolerated violent racism for too long.

American and Swedish church leaders sign joint climate justice pledge

The Episcopal Church, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, and Church of Sweden have signed a joint pledge related to climate justice.

The message urges action on the unprecedented negative effects of climate change. “As we observe the Season of Creation, we renew the call for our churches to work together for the sake of Earth and to build collaborations wherever possible, both with other communities of faith and with diverse agents in our civil society,” the text reads. “Now is the time for science, politics, business, culture and religion - everything that is an expression of human dignity - to address together this critical issue for our time.”

Dr Saïd Ailabouni: God is on the side of rejected, oppressed, occupied

Born in Nazareth, Galilee, Rev. Dr Saïd Ailabouni moved to the US at the age of 19 to become a physician. But he was so angry at God that he went to study theology instead, becoming a Lutheran pastor. Now he is leading the Middle East & Europe desk of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Since leaving his hometown 50 years ago, he visits his Palestinian family regularly. As the World Week for Peace in Palestine and Israel approaches, Ailabouni agreed to share some of his lifetime observations with the Word Council of Churches.

WCC pressing ahead with disarmament work

The work of the World Council of Churches (WCC) related to disarmament continues to endure and expand, even as the world faces increasing injustice and tensions that threaten peace on a daily basis.

US consultation on Middle East reaffirms “persistent hope” for peace

WCC News spoke to Rev. Douglas Leonard, coordinator of the Ecumenical United Nations Office and World Council of Churches (WCC) representative to the United Nations in New York, after attending a summit in Washington D.C. that brought together some 45 representatives of churches and faith-based organizations committed to developing an advocacy plan that responds to the current political situation in the Holy Land.

Sustainable resourcing for sustainable development

Bishop Ingeborg Midttømme, from the Church of Norway, serves at the diocese of Møre, in the northwestern part of the Scandinavian country. She is also a board member of Norwegian Church Aid. Over the past years, she has been an active participant in international events that focus on the global agenda on sustainable development, such as the United Nations annual climate conferences.

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.

How can you help refugees?

What else could your family, your parish, your community do to respond to the needs of migrants and refugees arriving in your country? Representatives of many different churches met in Rome in September to discuss that practical question, as well as respond to the broader challenge of how people of faith can combat the rising tide of racism, xenophobia and nationalist policies that increasingly target vulnerable migrants and asylum seekers.

US churches wrestle with complexities of race and religion

Defying gathering clouds, “Act Now to End Racism” rally attendees on Wednesday joined rousing choruses of Gospel standards and pledged to recommit to the cause of racial equality. Throughout this week’s three-day event in Washington, D.C., they grappled with a stubborn and pernicious reality amid a tense and uncertain political environment.

Is there a faith imperative for gender justice?

As the 62nd session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSWS62) was underway this week in New York City, Rev. Canon Terrie Robinson encouraged faith leaders to see their positive role in speaking out for gender justice in their communities.

Religious organizations speak up on refugee crisis at UN event

On 22 January, the World Council of Churches, together with the ACT Alliance, General Board of Church and Society of the United Methodist Church, General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, United Nations Office on Genocide Prevention and Responsibility to Protect, and the UN Inter-Agency Task Force with Faith Based Organizations, co-organized the Fourth Annual Symposium on the Role of Religion and Faith-Based Organizations (FBOs) in International Affairs with the theme “Perspectives on migration: displacement and marginalization, inclusion and justice”.

WCC to co-host public event on migration and displacement at UN

Why do people move? When their movement is forced, how should this be addressed? How can nations and faith-based organizations work together to mitigate the causes of forced migration and protect individuals who are forced to flee? What are the national and international legal architectures that need to be constructed to prevent a repeat of our recent failures as nations and organizations to protect and provide for migrants? What risks and rights challenges do migrants face in transit and in destination countries? What are the social costs of migration? And what is the benefit of host nations receiving migrants?