Press Release No: 19/05
29 March 2019
The following is a message from the presidency of the Conference of European Churches. Rev. Christian Krieger (President, Reformed Protestant Church of Alsace and Lorraine), Rt Rev. Dr Guli Francis-Dehqani (Vice-President, Church of England), and Metropolitan Cleopas of Sweden and All Scandinavia (Vice-President, Ecumenical Patriarchate) met in Leicester (UK) today to continue implementation of the CEC Strategic Plan 2019-2023. The strategic plan focusses on three aims: promoting peace, justice, and reconciliation in Europe; deepening church communion and ecumenical fellowship; and raising the Churches’ voice in Europe and toward the European Institutions. The presidency will also participate in a vigil service with civic, interfaith, and community leaders at Leicester Cathedral later in the day.
Today, we reaffirm the bonds of ecclesial and ecumenical fellowship that unite Churches across Europe. We respond to the same call—to follow the one Christ and be moved by the same Holy Spirit. These are bonds that unite us across time and history, and move us forward together in hope and witness.
The Conference of European Churches emerged from a fragmented and divided Europe following the Second World War. At that time there was a real need to overcome political divisions, and work for healing and peace. Today, the continent experiences pain from unhealed wounds and new divisions. We also recall our place in the broader world and the global challenges that we face. European Churches have to look to their roots and history, and again act as an instrument of peace and understanding.
We will continue to build bridges of peace and hospitality in our communities, and remain committed to strengthening relationships among churches in Europe. We are enriched by our differences and the diversity of paths leading to the realisation of European ideals. Our common responsibility for the future of Europe compels us toward solidarity and friendship, even in the midst of uncertain and challenging political circumstances.
Together we pray that the God of reconciling hope guide us through history’s turmoil and lead us to the flourishing of unity. May we look toward the dawning of the Easter hope and find strength in the mission God has entrusted to us.
For more information or an interview, please contact:
Dr Erin Green
Conference of European Churches
Rue Joseph II, 174 B-1000 Brussels
Tel. +32 2 234 68 42
Fax +32 2 231 14 13