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WCC general secretary congratulates next Archbishop of Canterbury

The general secretary of the World Council of Churches (WCC), Rev. Dr Konrad Raiser, has today written to the Most Rev. Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Wales, congratulating him on his appointment as the 104th Archbishop of Canterbury.

WCC mourns death of former colleague

The World Council of Churches (WCC) was deeply grieved to learn of the sudden death of a former member of staff, Father Ion Bria, on 2 July 2002, in Geneva. In 1973, Bria took up the post of executive secretary for mission and relations with Orthodox churches within the WCC, and in 1987 became the director of the WCC Sub-unit for Renewal and Congregational Life. Shortly before his retirement in 1994, Father Ion took up the post of director of the Faith and Witness Unit.

Ecumenical Institute Bossey: Religions address crisis of violence, and peace

The world’s religions aspire to peace. However it is a sad fact that they are often involved in conflict and violence. This paradox was the subject of intense discussion at a multi-faith consultation on violence, peace and religions held in June. Forty participants – Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists and Christians from Europe, Asia, Africa, the Middle East, North and South America – gathered for eight days at the World Council of Churches (WCC) Ecumenical Institute at Bossey, near Geneva. The elimination of violence, they declared, is a challenge to all religions. The consultation was the first in a series on the topic of religions and violence to be organized by the Ecumenical Institute.

Horn of Africa visit: WCC general secretary to address conflict and Christian-Muslim relations

Rev. Dr Konrad Raiser, general secretary of the World Council of Churches (WCC), will lead a delegation to the Horn of Africa, 1-16 July. The main purpose of the visit is to learn more about the ongoing conflicts in the region and the peace-building role churches can play. Raiser notes that a major need is "to reflect with the churches on the challenge of Christians and Muslims living together without their differences turning into sources of conflict". The delegation will visit northern and southern Sudan, Ethiopia and Eritrea, Tanzania and Kenya.

On visit to WCC, Jackson emphasizes need to encourage hope for peace in the Middle East

The Rev. Dr Jesse Jackson, on a visit today to the Geneva offices of the World Council of Churches (WCC), met with WCC general secretary Konrad Raiser for an exchange of views about an interreligious initiative on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. Jackson's proposed initiative hopes to mobilize religious leaders in advocating active non-violent approaches to peace, justice, and reconciliation in the region. To this effect, a visit of a delegation of Christian, Muslim and Jewish leaders to Palestine and Israel is being considered.

The Special Commission on Orthodox Participation in the WCC is preparing its final report

The Special Commission on Orthodox Participation in the World Council of Churches (WCC) will shortly hold its final plenary meeting. The Commission will meet 27 May - 2 June in Järvenpää, Finland, not far from Helsinki. The results of three years of work will be presented by the Special Commission in a final report to the WCC Central Committee, which meets this year 26 August - 3 September in Geneva, Switzerland.