JOINT WORKING GROUP BETWEEN THE CATHOLIC CHURCH AND THE WORLD COUNCIL OF CHURCHES
JWG Zoom Executive
6 July 2020
The Executive Committee of the Joint Working Group (JWG) between the Roman Catholic Church and the World Council of Churches (WCC) met online via zoom on Monday, 6 July 2020 under the leadership of His Eminence Archbishop and Metropolitan Nifon of Târgoviște, Romanian Orthodox Church, and Most Reverend Diarmuid Martin, Catholic Archbishop of Dublin and Primate of Ireland, who led the group in the opening prayer. The first session of the meeting was attended by Reverend Professor Dr Ioan Sauca, the new interim Secretary General of the WCC. The meeting started with an exchange on how different ecclesial contexts are facing the current crisis caused by the coronavirus. The participants acknowledged that the worldwide precautionary measures and ordinances during the lockdown had created a kind of ecumenical solidarity, with churches around the globe experiencing the same challenge of finding new ways to worship and to carry on their missionary and pastoral work. The group then discussed the final stages of the two studies with recommendations to the churches which the JWG has undertaken, on “Peacebuilding in Situations of Conflict” and “Migrants and Refugees – Ecumenical Challenges and Opportunities”. Members of the Executive acknowledged the global relevance of both topics while at the same time confirming the need for the contextualization of both texts in light of the new situation caused by the pandemic. Time was given to discussing the remaining steps of finalizing the text of the Tenth Report to be issued at the end of the current mandate. Finally, given the postponement of the eleventh Assembly of the World Council of Churches to 2022 and the related extension of the current mandate of the JWG, the group reviewed the timetable of the coming meetings of this important instrument of collaboration between the two partners. The next Executive will be held online in November 2020, while the next Plenary is planned for Spring 2021. The meeting concluded with a time of prayer led by Metropolitan Nifon of Târgoviște.