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Remembering Patrick Matsinkinyiri (27 July 1937 – 15 January 2021)

Patrick Matsikenyiri was born in Biriri, Southern Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe), and died in Mutare, Zimbabwe near his home village a few kilometers from the border of Mozambique, as a result of complications due to the COVID-19 virus. His career included virtually all aspects of church music — singing, choral directing, composition, hymnal editor, festival leader, professor, and enlivener of global songs in venues around the world.

In a COVID-stricken world, “everyone is important”

A webinar held 22 October gave space for persons with disabilities to share their reflections. Entitled “From Lamentation to Transformation,” the event, first in a series of webinars on COVID-19 perspectives, highlighted hope through stories, practical support, and social change as experienced by persons with disabilities.

Rev. Dr Angelique Walker-Smith: From a Christian Pan African perspective, “who writes the stories?”

Rev. Dr Angelique Walker-Smith is senior associate for Pan African and Orthodox Church Engagement at Bread for the World. She also serves on the World Council of Churches (WCC) central committee. She recently participated in a rally and march in Washington, DC, where thousands gathered to commemorate the 57th anniversary of the March on Washington in 1963 that included Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have A Dream" speech.

Religious leaders from South Sudan cherish those who host refugees

Commemorating the International Day of Peace on 21 September, the Ecumenical Network of South Sudan sent a message to the Uganda Joint Christian Council and to other organizations and communities who have hosted refugees.
“We would like to express our solidarity, knowing quite well your ever-commendable efforts towards your support for the people of South Sudan,” reads the statement. “You have been true ambassadors of the love of Christ.”

Faith and HIV treatment go hand in hand

For HIV-infected people in Nairobi, the Eastern Deanery Aids Relief Program makes a difference. By providing a quarter of the antiretroviral therapy care, it helps around 26,000 HIV-infected people in the Kenyan capital to live normal lives.

Paving the way for ecumenical studies, learning English in Bossey

Each year students from all over the world arrive at Bossey near Geneva for a three-month language training course to pave their way for ecumenical studies that follow on straight after. “The title captures the goal of the course,” says Father Lawrence Iwuamadi, the Nigerian priest who studied at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome and is academic dean of the Ecumenical Institute.

Tveit in DRC: “Making peace is holy work”

World Council of Churches (WCC) general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, as head of a delegation visiting the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), offered a sermon on 19 August encouraging peacemakers during an ecumenical service in the Protestant Cathedral in Kinshasa.

WCC-UNICEF partnership vital for children in Tanzania

At the Conference on World Mission and Evangelism, held in Tanzania in March, WCC communications interviewed Rene van Dongen, United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) Deputy Representative. Van Dongen spoke about Churches’ Commitments to Children, which is now supported by more than 200 churches and partners worldwide. The initiative was created when the WCC and UNICEF facilitated a broad consultative process around the question ‘How can churches use their influence to improve children’s lives?’

An advocate for family values, called by God

When Kenneth Ben grew up in the sixties and seventies each day started and ended with a prayer. His father, who was a pastor, had a pulpit in the home and his parents built a lifestyle around Christian values. Ben also learned early on the value of an extended family, where grandparents and relatives are included.

Mission conference theme carries profound meaning

Jooseop Keum is director of the WCC Commission on World Mission and Evangelism. He is also editor of the Resource Book for the upcoming WCC Conference on World Mission and Evangelism in Arusha, Tanzania on 8-13 March. In this interview, Keum shares his thoughts on the deeper meanings of the conference theme, “Moving in the Spirit: Called to Transforming Discipleship.” He also communicates his hope for contributions, suggestions and criticisms to the new WCC mission statement “Together towards Life”.

#WCC70: Dr Agnes Abuom: “I dream of a world where every man and woman’s dignity will be upheld”

It’s 70 years since the World Council of Churches was founded in Amsterdam on 23 August. In addition to a commemoration service in Amsterdam on 23 August, the WCC, its member churches and partners are planning a variety of events to move forward on our ongoing Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace, and at the same time honour and learn from these 70 years of ecumenical endeavour. Dr Abuom, from the Anglican Church of Kenya, is the moderator of the WCC Central Committee. She is the first woman and the first African in the position in WCC’s history. In an interview, she reflects on the evolution of the WCC in the past 70 years.

Nigerian breaks down stereotypes on Muslims

For Nigerian Nwankpa Kenneth Chinedu, attending a course on peacebuilding in Judaism, Christianity and Islam in Geneva opened his eyes and helped eliminate stereotypes and myths he had built in his mind about Muslims.