Norwegian Minister holds discussion with WCC delegates
A delegation led by Thorhild Widvey, Minister of Culture in Norway along with prominent Norwegian politicians and church leaders was welcomed on September 30, 2014 at the World Council of Churches (WCC) Headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. The delegation included Catharina Munthe, Political Adviser to the Norwegian Ministry of Culture; Ingrid Vad Nilsen, Director General in Department of Church Affairs in the Ministry of Culture; Inger Lise Lero, Advisor to the Ministry of Government administration, reform and church affairs from the Church of Norway; Jens-Petter Johnsen, Director of the Church Council in the Norwegian Church and Berit Hagen Agoy, General Secretary of the Council on Ecumenical and International Relations in the Church of Norway.
Delegations Holds Discussions
The delegation was received by Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, General Secretary of WCC who himself comes from Norway and has served as General Secretary of the Church of Norway Council on Ecumenical and International Relations from 2002 to 2009. The meeting discussed in detail the role of religion in changing societies, respect for religious communities and religion’s role in public life, especially in a society like Norway.
The delegates were also introduced to the work and history of the WCC, especially in the field of dialogue with other faith communities, ecumenical formation and education, health, migration, human rights and climate justice. The participants in the meeting shared ways to strengthen the work of the churches in cooperation with other actors reiterating that “churches are prophetic witnesses” and should lead the communities.
At the meeting, Thorhild Widvey, announced a grant of 2 million Norwegian Krone in support of the WCC’s Central Committee meeting, which will be held in Trondheim, Norway, in 2016. The Central Committee is WCC’s highest governing body.
Among WCC staff members participating in the meeting were Yorgo Lemopoulos, WCC Deputy General Secretary; Dr Isabel Apawo Phiri, WCC Associate General Secretary; Peter Prove, Director of the WCC’s Commission of the Churches on International Affairs; Rev. Dr Dagmar Heller, Professor at the Ecumenical Institute in Bossey and Marianne Ejdersten, WCC Communications liaison for Europe.
The delegates also met with leadership and staff members of the Lutheran World Federation and ACT Alliance, partner organizations of the WCC based in the Ecumenical Centre.
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