The World Council of Churches (WCC) and the Global Christian Forum (GCF) have signed a memorandum of understanding acknowledging their respective roles in their mutual pursuit of Christian unity.
The MoU between the two Christian organizations recognized the pivotal role of the four pillars of their members which include WCC, World Evangelical Alliance, Pentecostal World Fellowship, and the Roman Catholic Church through the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity.
According to the WCC statement, the two international bodies aims to exchange faith stories of individuals and churches as well as their perspectives regarding shared concerns to recognize Christ within each other.
The agreement also promotes expressing and nurturing one's faith freely in respected faith communities. They also look forward to addressing matters of common interest together based on the organizations' renewed relationship.
WCC And GCF Renewed Relationship
In a statement, WCC Acting General Secretary Ioan Sauca recognized the contributions of GCF since 1990. He shared that GCF was formed through the call of the WCC 8th Assembly in Harare, Zimbabwe when the worldwide ecclesial landscape shifted dramatically in the second half of the 20th century.
He said the GCF attended to the Christian groups or denominations who do not intend or do not feel qualified to join the WCC which created a new space of Christian unity during those years. Sauca expressed his gladness for GCF's testimony of bearing witness to the redemption and unity of all in Jesus Christ.
GCF Secretary Casely Baiden Essamuah also expressed his gladness in signing the MoU. He emphasized both bodies' complementing functions, as well as the realization of the need for Christian unity that leads them to several expressions of ecumenical commitment and cooperation.
According to the MoU, the forum shall give narrative summaries of its meetings and activities, while the WCC will make an undesignated financial allocation each year. Sauca reiterated in his statement that both bodies were "called to work in synergy and complementarity." On behalf of WCC, he hoped that GCF will be blessed for serving the Christian community towards unity.
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Four Christianity Pillars Partaking In MoU
Aside from Sauca and Essamuah, the MoU was also signed by Fr. Andrzej Choromanski of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, Bishop Thomas Schirrmacher of the World Evangelical Alliance, and William Wilson of the Pentecostal World Fellowship, according to WCC statement. They also expressed their gratitude for the memorandum which they said was a result of many years of discussion.
Wilson said he considered the GCF a "healthy place of dialogue, relationship-building, and love." More than that, he was also able to make a place and share the love of Jesus with others. Choromański recognized the need for unity among Christians and looks forward to the future of GCF. While Schirrmacher also expressed gratitude for the MOU, saying as a member of the pillars, they wanted to be involved and be part of making the space for unity happened.
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