Meeting to prepare materials for the 2021 Week of Prayer for Christian Unity

24 Sep 2019

An international group jointly sponsored by the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of Christian Unity and the Faith and Order Commission of the World Council of Churches met in Grandchamp, Areuse, in the canton of Neuchatel, Switzerland, 15-18 September, to prepare materials for the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, 2021. The World Council of Churches had invited the Community of Grandchamp to choose a theme and draft a text for the Week of Prayer. The whole community worked on this draft over the course of several months which then formed the basis of the drafting work with the international group. Four of the sisters also worked with the international group during the September meeting. The meeting was chaired jointly by the director of the World Council of Churches Faith and Order Commission, the Reverend Odair Pedroso Mateus, and Fr Anthony Currer from the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity.

The community of Grandchamp is a monastic community that brings together sisters from different churches and countries. The community formed in the first half of the twentieth century and from its inception had close ties with both the Community of Taizé and Abbé Paul Couturier, a seminal figure in the history of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. Today there are about fifty sisters in the community, committed to seeking the path of reconciliation between Christians, across the human family, and with respect to the whole of creation.

The theme chosen by the local writing group was Abide in my love and you shall bear much fruit (cf. John 15: 5-9). This allowed the sisters to share the experience and wisdom of their contemplative life abiding in the love of God, and to speak about the fruit of this prayer: closer communion with one’s brothers and sisters in Christ and greater solidarity with the whole of creation.


Participants in the International Team

Ms Anne-Noëlle Clément      Unité Chrétienne
Revd Peter Colwell     Deputy General Secretary of Churches Together in Britain and Ireland
Revd Anthony Currer     Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity
Dr Ani Ghazaryan Drissi     Programme Executive of the Faith and Order Secretariat at the WCC
Miss Virag Kinga Mezei       Intern at the WCC
Dr Hanne Lamparter     German Lutheran Church
Sr Leticia Candelario Lopez       Verbum Dei Missionary Fraternity (Singapore)
Revd Dr Odair Pedroso Mateus     Director of Faith & Order
Revd Father James Puglisi       Friar of the Atonement, Centro pro Unione
Revd Dr Mikie Roberts      Programme Executive for Spiritual Life at the WCC
Dr Clare Watkins     University of Roehampton


Participants from the the Community of Grandchamp

Sr Anne-Emmanuelle Guy
Sr Gesine Rohrbach
Sr Embla Vegerfors
Sr Svenja Wichmann

Secretarial Support was provided by Mr Alexander Freeman of the WCC.


Photo: The International group with members of the Grandchamp Community.