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Applications open for WCC Eco-School 2022 with focus on North America

Applications are open for the fifth edition of the World Council of Churches (WCC) Eco-School on Water, Food and Climate Justice, to be held 24 April-1 May 2022 in the North America region. Convening in-person at the Stony Point Center in New York, the event is open to young people under 30 years of age from the North America region only. 

Reflecting on California groundwater abuse

I live in western Oregon, part of the Pacific Northwest long regarded as a verdant paradise, courtesy of rains and snowfall that can exceed 100 inches each year.  The snowfall in the mountains sustains our rivers through the dry summer.  But our climate has been profoundly disrupted.  Where I live, summers are far drier and hot.  But just to the south of us, this climate change has caused a drought worse than any drought in the past 1200 years.  Scientists call it a “mega-drought,” a severe drought affecting massive areas of the western United States for more than two decades.  

“Bathroom ministry” for the homeless

Whether people have access to a safe and clean toilet has wide-reaching consequences for their dignity, health, access to education, and gender equality. Churches around the world are therefore acting as messengers, implementers, advocators, and guardians to promote better sanitation and hygiene. There are many practical and encouraging examples. One is the Episcopal Church of Saints Andrew & Matthew (SsAM) in Wilmington (Delaware) in the USA, which has a “community bathroom” that people from the homeless community can use.

COP26: historic moment into what really matters to sustain life

The highly anticipated, long awaited COP26 began 31 October. It has now been six years since the adoption of the Paris Agreement at COP21 and much remains to be implemented in order to fulfil the promises agreed to at that historic moment by the member states. We knew then that the road ahead would be challenging and that changing our systems would require a radical shift in policies and behaviours—but we were hopeful. 

Bethany Seminary students creatively explore hospitality in the neighborhood—and across the world

These days, we are all swimming in the murky waters of theological, political, and social division. Swamped by waves of conflict and pulled down by undercurrents of dysfunction, it is reasonable to fear for the future of our communities of faith. But thats not the end of the story. As president of Bethany Theological Seminary, an agency of the Church of the Brethren, I have found a deep, clear reservoir of hope in the witness and work of our students and alumni.

As transboundary water dispute over Nile River worsens, WCC calls for prayers for peace

As tension grows in the long-running regional dispute over a giant dam built by Ethiopia on the Blue Nile, one of the Nile Rivers main tributaries, World Council of Churches (WCC) acting general secretary, Rev. Prof. Dr. Ioan Sauca appealed to all WCC member churches in Ethiopia, Egypt, Sudan and around the world to pray for a peaceful solution to the problem.

South Hebron Hills families share stories of life under occupation

Jack Munayer, coordinator for the World Council of Churches Ecumenical Accompaniment Program in Palestine and Israel (WCC-EAPPI), recently visited the South Hebron Hills area with diplomatic delegates from eight different countries, as well as Israeli activists. The visit was organized by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. The group visited families and listened to their stories with the goal of discerning the nature of hardship and trauma that the occupation continues to cause.

Youth amplify #NoDAPL movement in Standing Rock

Mni Wiconi

Water is life

This Lakota chant rang out anew as the Youth Council from the Standing Rock and Cheyenne River Nations gathered with elders, tribal leaders and other water protectors for a springtime rally. Religious leaders continued to stand with them in solidarity for water justice.

Bedouins of Pope’s Hill fight eviction

East of Jerusalem, in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, a Bedouin community has lived on Pope’s Hill since the creation of Israel in 1948, when they were evicted from their lands in the Negev and arrived there as refugees.

Will children ever have safe access to education in Khan Al-Ahmar?

Khan Al-Ahmar is a Bedouin community of around 200 people whose main livelihood has been traditional farming of sheep and goats for consumption in the village, and for selling the milk, yogurt and meat. The closest village, Bethany, is 14 km away and, until recently, the women would take the dairy products to sell in the Jerusalem market, 19 km away. The children had an important role in the economy, herding the flocks, but they also went to school.

Palestinian Christian peace worker yearns for courageous leaders

As the WCC olive harvest initiative in 2020 drew to a close in early December, WCC News met with Nora Carmi, a Christian Palestinian who has worked for peace and justice her whole life, to hear her perspective on the situation in the holy land today, and the role of faith in sustaining hope.

In Palestine, “God honored this olive tree”

“Just as you cannot live without water, olive oil is the same for us—and the olive tree is our life,” explains a smiling Abu-Issa under an awe-inspiring 13-meter olive tree. Its umbrella of branches extends over the al-Walaja hills, just north of Bethlehem.