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Hope prevails in times of crisis in Lebanon

The fatal blast in Beirut last month became yet another blow to an already plagued country. In recent months, a financial crisis with a free-falling currency and rising unemployment has further undermined the Lebanese economy. Add to that one million Syrian refugees and the COVID-19 pandemic, and the contours of a fragile nation facing monumental challenges emerge.

“United Methodists Stand Against Racism” campaign offers array of actions

In a campaign called simply “United Methodists Stand Against Racism,” the United Methodist Church is offering an array of worship opportunities, prayer gatherings, practical suggestions and other resources.

“We recognize racism as a sin,” reads a statement introducing the campaign. “We commit to challenging unjust systems of power and access.”

Young Africans are eager to grapple with challenges

Young African clergy, theologians and laypersons are eager to engage with the challenging issues facing their continent and the world. This became clear in a recent essay competition for authors below 35 years by the World Council of Churches (WCC) in partnership with the All Africa Conference of Churches (AACC).

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.

Erhard Hermansen: “The church in South Sudan needs our prayers"

Erhard Hermansen is general secretary of the Christian Council of Norway, which has been collaborating closely with churches in Sudan and South Sudan for nearly 30 years. Hermansen attended the South Sudan Council of Churches 2019 Assembly in late August, and shares his reflections and hopes below.

Dealing with traumas and healing of wounds

It is confirmation season in Greenland. In churches across the country, bench rows are decorated with flowers and candles along the aisle. Joy is in the air and it is time for a vast majority of 14-year-olds to have their Christian baptism confirmed.

WCC releases message after visit to Nicaragua in midst of political crisis

“We have sought to support dialogue as a means to resolve differences, and to reaffirm and strengthen calls for justice, peace and respect for diverse ways of thinking in contemporary societies”, reads a message issued by the members of an ecumenical delegation organized by the World Council of Churches (WCC) that visited Nicaragua on 28-29 August.

Rebecca Dali: My faith in God motivates me every second

During World Humanitarian Day on 21 August, Dr Rebecca Samuel Dali received the 2017 Humanitarian Award from the Sergio Vieira de Mello Foundation at the United Nations office in Geneva in recognition of her courageous efforts in reintegration of women abducted by the Boko Haram into their local communities in the northern Nigeria. In her visit to the Ecumenical Centre, Dali shares the source of her courage and commitment to help the most vulnerable.

Geneva event focuses on ending violence against children

Participating in a new World Vision campaign called “It takes a World to End Violence against Children,” World Council of Churches (WCC) deputy general secretary Prof. Dr Isabel Apawo Phiri spoke at a Geneva-based event on 13 June, reflecting that churches and organizations working together can prevent and address “a tragic reality.”

Carrying the cross without fear

The brutal attacks on two churches in Alexandria and Tanta on Palm Sunday with more than 40 victims are not the first attacks on Christians in Egypt. In January, the so-called Islamic State declared threat on Coptic Christians and killed eight. In December 2016, a blast at the Cathedral in Cairo killed 30 people.

Amid conflict and looming famine in South Sudan, the church offers hope

For the general overseer of the South Sudan Council of Churches (SSCC) there is trauma and hopelessness in his country, and the only institution that can offer hope at the moment is the church. “We are experiencing levels of violence we have never seen before,” says the bishop. “I talk as a church person, as a person who is involved in the situation every day, listening and hearing from both sides and the ordinary person in the street,” says quiet-spoken Dau, whose words carry a poignant power.

Holy work for the Holy Land

The Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel was launched by the WCC in 2002 based on an appeal from local church leaders to create an international presence in the country. So far, more than 1,800 ecumenical accompaniers have worked to create conditions for a just peace.

WCC offers condolences in wake of Great Britain attack

As Great Britain continued to cope with grief and trauma in the wake of the country’s deadliest terror attack in 12 years, WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit offered sympathy for those who lost loved ones from both Great Britain and other countries.