World Council of Churches -
Contact: + 41 22 791 6153 +41 79 507 6363
For immediate release:
23 June 2004
WCC general secretary visits Germany
The general secretary of the World Council of Churches (WCC) Rev. Dr Samuel Kobia will visit Germany from 28 June to 2 July. This is Kobia’s first official visit to Germany since taking office in January 2004.
Kobia’s visit will include the German capital Berlin, the headquarters of the Evangelical Church in Germany (EKD) in Hanover, and time in various other EKD member churches. Discussions will focus upon Kobia’s plans as new general secretary and on the World Council’s ongoing work.
In Berlin, Kobia will meet amongst others with Dr Wolfgang Huber, chair of the EKD Council and bishop of Berlin-Brandenburg-Silesian Oberlausitz, with Dr Rolf Koppe, bishop for ecumenical relations and ministries abroad, and Dr Margot Kässmann, bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Hanover. On 1 July, the WCC general secretary will bring greetings to the annual St John’s reception of the Evangelical Church in Germany, to which prominent politicians and members of society have been invited.
Following a meeting with Professor Christoph Schwöbel, dean of the faculty of theology in Heidelberg, there will be a discussion session with students. At Heidelberg Univeristy, Kobia will give a lecture entitled
Grounded in faith - a spirituality of resistance and alternatives to injustice, violence and despair”. Kobia will then visit the Protestant Institute for Ecumenical Studies and Research in Bensheim to hear about the institute’s work.
Meetings with representatives of EKD member churches in Bavaria, Kurhessen-Waldeck, Thuringia, Württemberg and the Palatinate are also planned, as are meetings with Free Church representatives from other WCC German member churches. Discussions will focus on the WCC Decade to Overcome Violence, the WCC ninth assembly in 2006 in Porto Alegre, Brazil, and the Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel (EAPPI), as well as looking at wider theological and political issues.
The programme will end with visits to the Wartburg in Eisenach, the Bonhoeffer House in Berlin, and a walk along a remaining part of the Berlin wall.
Kobia will be accompanied on this visit by Rev Sabine Udodesku, WCC executive secretary.
Press conference at the Protestant Institute for Ecumenical Studies and Research in Bensheim
Tuesday 29.06.2004, 11.00-11.30.
Contact: Dr Alexander Gemeinhardt, tel. +49 62 51 84 33 0
Place: Konfessionskundliches Institut / Evangelischer Bund -
Protestant Institute for Ecumenical Studies and Research
Eifelstrasse 35, D-64625 Bensheim
Press conference in Bad Orb
Tuesday 29.06.2004, 15.30-16.15
Contact: Karl Waldeck, tel + 49 561 93 78 272
Place: Evangelisches Gemeindezentrum -
Protestant parish centre
Würzburger Strasse 13, D-63619 Bad Orb
Press briefing for journalists in Berlin
Thursday, 01.07.2004, 16:00-17:00 Uhr
Contact: Silke Fauzi, tel +49 511 27 96 267
Place: Haus des Bevollmächtigten des Rates der EKD -
House of the EKD Council representative to the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany,
Charlottenstrasse 53/54, D-10117 Berlin
Juan Michel,+41 22 791 6153 +41 79 507 6363
The World Council of Churches promotes Christian unity in faith, witness and service for a just and peaceful world. An ecumenical fellowship of churches founded in 1948, today the WCC brings together 349 Protestant, Orthodox, Anglican and other churches representing more than 560 million Christians in over 110 countries, and works cooperatively with the Roman Catholic Church. The WCC general secretary is Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, from the [Lutheran] Church of Norway. Headquarters: Geneva, Switzerland.