Rev. Prof. Dr Ioan Sauca, WCC interim general secretary
Dr. Agnes Aboum, moderator of the WCC Central Committee
Towards justice and peace – how?
Since the General Assembly in Busan 2013, many of us have continued to pray with the words of the theme: God of life, lead us to justice and peace. We are now contemplating a new theme in preparation for the Assembly in Karlsruhe in September: Christ’s love moves the world to reconciliation and unity.
As Christians, we long for justice, peace, reconciliation, and unity. This is our faith and our hope in Jesus Christ, our savior. This is our calling, because we know that every human being is created in the image of God. This is why another key notion for the WCC family is human dignity.
The way to justice and peace between people goes through dialogue, and dialogue is a fundamental tool for churches interacting in the WCC. We believe in dialogue, and we know that you, who are chosen to lead the WCC, are trying to reach the leadership of the Russian Orthodox Church through dialogue.
But how long can we continue seeking dialogue when there is no response from one party, no visible steps towards peacebuilding? How long is it possible to refrain from asking patriarch Kirill to withdraw from his position in the WCC, when he is condoning the atrocities of war in his support of president Putin?
The board of the Uniting Church in Sweden recently convened and, in that meeting, decided to urge you to consider excluding patriarch Kirill from the WCC. He is ostensibly uncommitted to our common journey towards justice and peace, and he shows no signs of striving for reconciliation or unity. It seems he has lost sight of human dignity.
We continue praying for unity among churches and between countries. May the resurrected Christ lead us and keep us.