WCC Assembly 2022 – what, when, who?

An introduction to this year’s Assembly by Dr Nicola Brady, General Secretary, Churches Together in Britain & Ireland

Many of our Member Churches are currently preparing for the 11th Assembly of the World Council of Churches (WCC) which will take place from 31 August to 8 September 2022 in Karlsruhe, Germany.

A gathering of the global church is always an exciting and important occasion, but this particular Assembly comes at a critical moment when churches are reflecting on their priorities in the context of a world that has been changed by COVID-19 and the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

The formal purpose of the Assembly is to serve as the supreme legislative body for the WCC. Ordinarily, it meets every eight years to review policy and practice and make appointments to the senior offices of the Council. It appoints a Central Committee to serve as the chief governing body during this period.

The Assembly is also a vital space for reflection, discernment and planning and each assembly adopts a specific theme to guide this process. The theme chosen this year is “Christ’s love moves the world to reconciliation and unity”. The Assembly resources explain the theme in this way:

“In this fragmented and fractured world, the Assembly theme is an affirmation of faith that Christ’s love transforms the world in the life-giving power of the Holy Spirit. Against the powers of destruction and sin, the Assembly theme affirms that the love of the compassionate, crucified, and risen Christ is at the heart of this world. It is a radical call to the churches to work together unceasingly and with people of other faiths and all those of goodwill for just peace and reconciliation. It is a call for the visible unity of the church to become a prophetic sign and a foretaste of the reconciliation of this world with God, and the unity of humankind and all creation.”

A version of this piece first appeared in the CTBI Spring 2022 magazine.

Further information

Watch an introduction to the main themes of the WCC Assembly by the WCC’s Acting General Secretary, the Rev. Prof. Dr Ioan Sauca

The WCC website has lots of information to help you understand how the Assembly works, plus resources to help you reflect on the theme, including those for prayer and Bible study.

The Resource Book is the main guide to the Assembly with essential practical details about the event, a reflection on the Assembly theme; documents and reports and a user-friendly timetable Download the Resource Book for the Assembly (222 page pdf).

Churches Together in England’s Principal Officer for Mission and Evangelism, Rev Dr Ben Aldous, is attending the WCC Assembly on behalf of CTE. Look out for Ben’s vlogs from Germany on our Twitter account and on our Facebook page during the event.