By ACNS staff with additional reporting by WCC staff.
Anglicans and Episcopalians from countries including Burundi, Japan, Uganda and Melanesia are in Geneva for the World Council of Churches' (WCC) Central Committee meeting.
Members of the Anglican Communion make up 11% of the WCC’s elected governing body – second only to Reformed and Eastern Orthodox Christian traditions.
The committee, which consists of 150 members from around the world, is responsible for carrying out the policies adopted by the WCC 10th Assembly, reviewing and supervising WCC programmes and the budget of the Council.
The WCC Central Committee will hold meetings every two years until the next Assembly. The last Assembly took place in Busan, Republic of Korea, in October and November 2013.
At yesterday’s opening of the meeting, WCC Central Committee moderator and Kenyan Anglican Dr Agnes Abuom reflected on the significance of the theme “pilgrimage of justice and peace”, which is based on a call issued by the WCC Assembly.
Her address put a special focus on the engagement of youth in the ecumenical movement. "To bring back prophetic dynamism and emphasis into the ecumenical movement, we need to let the young generation own and define the ecumenical movement," she said.
Dr Abuom shared aspirations for ecumenical spirituality to extend its boundaries to be more inclusive of the needs of churches and communities.
"A revitalised ecumenical spirituality must not be bound by narrow and tradition-bound religious, ecclesial and dogmatic frameworks if they have proven to be unhelpful to addressing the present needs. Rather, it must embrace a prophetic posture for justice, for peace-making and for the diaconal care for all living beings,” she said.
Dr Abuom reflected on global issues related to poverty and inequality, weak governance, proxy conflicts and wars, as well as unemployment among youth. She spoke about the changing ecclesial and religious landscapes and challenges they pose. To address these issues, she stressed the importance of a transformation of ecumenism and revitalisation of spirituality.
The members of the WCC Central Committee from Anglican Communion Member Churches are:
- Bishop Mark MacDonald, Anglican Church of Canada (A President of the WCC Central Committee)
- Dr Agnes Abuom, Anglican Church of Kenya (Executive committee member and Central Committee moderator)
- Bishop Yona Mwesigwa Katoneene, Church of Uganda
- The Revd Jeanne Françoise Ndimubakunzi, Eglise Anglicane du Burundi
- Mrs Jesca Bireri Laki Lukudu, Episcopal Church of the Sudan
- Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje, Province de l'Eglise Anglicane du Rwanda
- The Revd Prof. Dr Renta Nishihara, Anglican Church in Japan
- The Most Revd Dr Phillip Aspinall, Anglican Church of Australia
- The Revd Fr Rex R. B. Reyes, Jr., Episcopal Church in the Philippines
- Mrs Elenor I. Lawrence, Church in the Province of the West Indies
- The Revd Dr Sarah Rogers, Church in Wales
- The Rt Revd Dr Peter Forster, Church of England
- The Revd Canon Dr Leslie Nathaniel, Church of England
- The Revd Aida Consuelo Sanchez-Navarro, The Episcopal Church
- Mrs Tagolyn Kabekabe, Church of Melanesia
The Most Revd Dr S. Tilewa Johnson Church of the Province of West Africa who had been elected a member of the WCC’s Central Committee passed away in January of this year.
For the latest from the Central Committee meeting visit http://www.oikoumene.org/en