Plans for the historic merger of the two largest Reformed church bodies in the world will be consolidated this week during a high-level, five-day meeting that opened Monday.
Members of the governing bodies of the World Alliance of Reformed Churches (WARC) and the Reformed Ecumenical Council (REC) are meeting this week for the first time together in Utrecht, Netherlands, to work on finalizing a draft constitution, shaping the structure and vision of the soon-to-be-official World Communion of Reformed Churches (WCRC), and dealing with “numerous practical considerations.”
“This important joint meeting demonstrates the commitment of these two Reformed bodies to grow together in the coming months,” stated WARC general secretary Setri Nyomi in a public announcement last week. “It is a great opportunity to meet our sisters and brothers in REC and to make concrete our dream of a new truly vital Reformed communion that will meet the challenge of God’s call to justice and unity in the 21st century.” more >>
The executive committee of the World Council of Churches decided this week during their meeting in Germany to extend the term of their current general secretary, the Rev. Dr. Samuel Kobia, until a new leader takes office.
Initially, the committee was planning to select an interim general secretary during their Sept. 23-26 meeting in Luebeck, Germany.
However, it was decided that Kobia will remain the WCC general secretary until the election at the Council’s central committee meeting to be held in Geneva, Switzerland, next year from Aug. 26 to Sept. 2. more >>
Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair has launched an international search for 30 religious youth to embark on a 10-month journey of interfaith service for the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals.
“As changemakers for current and future generations, young people have the opportunity to establish a new vision of inter-religious interaction that places protecting the welfare of the world’s poorest at its center,” Blair stated in an official announcement.
The "Faiths Act Fellows," as the 30 "inter-religious ambassadors," aged 18 to 25, will be called, will be brought together by the Faiths Act Fellowship to first go through a two-month intensive initiative that includes fieldwork with primary health care partners fighting deaths from malaria in Africa. more >>
A delegation of African Christian leaders joined their American counterparts this week on Capitol Hill to give voice to climate change concerns and its impact on the lives of poor Africans.
Crops are failing and storms are increasing across Africa, says the group of Christians from Uganda and Zimbabwe to U.S. congressmen, according to the National Council of Churches USA.
Delegate member Rosemary Mayiga, a Ugandan Catholic and rural economist, says crops die and African farmers have to plough and plant again because of climate change. more >>
Hundreds of churches and Christian organizations around the world will pray for peace this Sunday on International Day of Prayer for Peace.
In the United States alone, nearly 140 congregations and Christian groups are organizing public prayer events on Sept. 21.
The day will also feature a coordinated event involving different countries around the world for a 24-hour prayer chain. In total, nine countries – America Samoa, Canada, Fiji, Indonesia, New Zealand, Norway, Samoa, Tuvalu and the United States – will be linked in the day-long prayer event. more >>
An ecumenical church delegation witnessed last week a war-ravaged South Ossetia where whole neighborhoods had been razed or torched during their visit nearly a month after the war.
Members of the World Council of Churches paid Russian and Georgian Christian communities a visit on Sept 3-7, with the South Ossetia trip taking place in the latter half of the trip. The first sight they saw when they reached South Ossetia were villages that were destroyed house by house.
They also saw incidents of looting and arson, as well as carloads of people presumed to be vigilantes. more >>