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WCC well-represented in Religions for Peace leadership

Religions for Peace is the world's largest and most representative multi-religious coalition, and as in other multi-faith groups, the World Council of Churches (WCC) and its ecumenical family figure strongly in its leadership bodies.

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.

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.

Peacemakers at work in Sri Lanka

In the wake of the Easter Sunday terrorist attacks in Sri Lanka, the Omnia Institute for Contextual Leadership, based in Chicago, lifted up points of hope that peace will win in the end. In a 25 April message, Shanta Premawardhana, president of the institute, wrote that every person of every faith of every nation deserves to wake up in peace. “Every child deserves to feel safe, welcomed, and alive to the promise that each day brings,” Premawardhana wrote. “I'm sure you know that this is why we build Interfaith Peacemaker Teams in Sri Lanka.”

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.

Faces of Hope raises awareness

A little more than a year ago Rev. Stacey Duensing went on a trip to Israel-Palestine together with her denomination, the Reformed Church in America. She returned home to the United States with a different perspective of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. A perspective she wanted to share with a broader public audience.

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?

G20 summit: call to pray for peace in Hamburg

Friday evening when the leaders of the G20 states will be meeting in Hamburg and discussing global economic, social, environmental and political issues, the churches in Germany are inviting people in Germany and all over the world to a common peace prayer.

World majority starts work on treaty to ban nuclear weapons

Nearly 70 percent of the world’s countries have now begun negotiations to ban nuclear weapons. One-hundred-thirty-two governments from all regions took part in the first-ever such talks at the United Nations on 27-31 March. There is concerted opposition to the talks from nuclear-armed governments and their allies.

Ecumenical Women at the UN urge solidarity to end gender-based violence

On 15 March, during the 61st session of the annual United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW), Ecumenical Women (EW) organized a public witness event at the Tillman Chapel at the Church Center of the UN (CCUN) to mobilize faith communities and civil society to work in solidarity to end gender-based violence.

Declaration of Human Rights by the World’s Religions issued at global conference

Leading religious scholars representing the major world religions have issued a declaration saying it is imperative that religions be a “positive resource for human rights”. The Declaration of Human Rights by the World’s Religions was released 15 September in Montreal, Canada at the 3rd Global Conference on World’s Religions after September 11.