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Orthodox and Anglican appeals from 1920 remain inspiration for unity

One of the foundational moments in the modern ecumenical movement is an encyclical letter issued 100 years ago by the Ecumenical Patriarchate on 1 January 1920. As its opening words state, it was addressed “Unto the Churches of Christ everywhere” and sent as a letter to the leaders of key Christian churches. Its first words are an appeal to “Love one another earnestly from the heart,” quoting from 1 Peter 1:22. The thrust of the letter is the suggestion that doctrinal differences among Christian churches do not, or at least should not, prevent “rapprochement” between Christians.

Freedom of religion rooted in justice

A recent consultation took important steps to find a faithful paradigm of thinking over the issue of "Freedom of Religion or Belief."Twenty-two church leaders and theologians gathered in Hattersheim am Main, Germany, 25-27 February, to discuss this issue in light of the global rise of ethno-nationalisms, xenophobia, interreligious intolerance, patriarchal hegemony and racism.“Given the present rise of ethno-nationalisms that use religion as identity markers and for legitimization of violence, it is imperative that we as people of faith be able to support the freedom of religion and work towards a world in which all people of faith have the freedom of expression, articulation and propagation of their faith,” said Philip Vinod Peacock, executive secretary for justice and witness of the World Communion of Reformed Churches.

CCIA meets in Brisbane with focus on Pacific regional priorities

Impacts of the climate change and the lingering health and environmental effects of nuclear testing on the countries in the Pacific region are among the issues to be discussed at the meeting of the WCC’s Commission of Churches on International Affairs (CCIA), convened from 19 to 21 February in Brisbane, Australia.

Peace-building women explore their strength, value

Women have a unique approach to peace-building that could strengthen communities facing conflict and other challenges, found participants at a side event during Geneva Peace Week.The World Council of Churches, ACT Alliance and Norwegian Church Aid organized a dialogue that emphasized new arenas for women’s participation in peace-building.

Geneva Peace Week

04 - 08 November 2019

Geneva Peace Week offers an opportunity to connect and highlight the work of peacebuilding actors and to expand the space for building peace and resolving conflict through dialogue and negotiation. World Council of Churches is involved in organization of two events during the Geneva Peace week.

Geneva, Switzerland

Asian Ecumenical Institute to train next generation of leaders

Twenty-seven young ecumenists from across Asia are currently attending the month-long Asian Ecumenical Institute organized by the Christian Conference of Asia. The programme aims to provide ecumenical formation and leadership development training for prospective church and ecumenical leaders. It is being held at the Christian Conference of Asia headquarters in Payap University Campus in Chiang Mai, Thailand.

The WCC Executive Committee Statement: Attacks and Persecution of Christian Communities in Asia

Throughout history, religious communities living in contexts in which other religions predominate have been among the most vulnerable groups in society. In many parts of the world today, Christians in such contexts are among the most persecuted communities. With the Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace (PJP) focus on Asia this year, we observe the challenges faced by Christian communities in several countries and territories in this region.

Executive committee

WCC leads exploration on racial justice

“Think about your policies, practices and actions, not to just look back at the past, but to ask what can we do today?” These are the reflections of Judith Roberts, director for Racial Justice Ministries for the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America.

WCC pilgrimage turns its eyes to Asia

“Our churches are directly involved in upholding the dignity and rights of people and communities in Asia irrespective of their religious or faith identities”, said Matthews George Chunakara, general secretary of the Christian Conference of Asia, at the opening of the annual meeting of the World Council of Churches (WCC) Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace Reference Group, in Chiang Mai, Thailand, on 4 March.

Dr Cecile De Sweemer, the doer of God

Dr Cecile De Sweemer, who served as staff of the Christian Medical Commission of the World Council of Churches (WCC) from 1982 to 1986, died on the 27 November in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). De Sweemer, a Belgian medical doctor with a doctorate in International Health from Johns Hopkins University, with extensive experience in Asia and Africa, was a dedicated and compassionate physician.

Bishop John Victor Samuel

Letter from WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit to the family of Bishop John Victor Samuel, one of the pioneers of the Church of Pakistan, paying tribute to his commitment for peace, unity and harmony, and his tireless work for interfaith relations, as well as for the unity of Christians in Pakistan and beyond.

General Secretary

WCC mourns death of Bishop John Victor Samuel

Bishop John Victor Samuel, age 87, one of the pioneers of the Church of Pakistan and a towering ecumenical stalwart, passed away in Multan, Pakistan on 30 August. His funeral was held in Multan on 2 September.