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Walking to Emmaus Walking to Emmaus
After a long walk in the streets of Bethlehem, we finally had the chance to wander around in the market for a couple of hours. Each Palestinian had to be a leader for some of the youth that were in the group, so a South African, two Germans, and a Swede formed my group. While hanging around on the roads, we passed by some tourist buses. One of the youths who were with me said: “Wow, there are a lot of tourists in Bethlehem. I’m glad I’m not a tourist but a pilgrim!”
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On World Refugee Day, closed doors or a welcome for the stranger? On World Refugee Day, closed doors or a welcome for the stranger?
One generally thinks of a pilgrimage as a journey undertaken voluntarily, in an attitude of reflection, peace and serenity, and with its objective or purpose being internal and spiritual. But on World Refugee Day (20 June), we may consider that the unprecedented numbers of refugees around the world are also embarked on their own pilgrimage of justice and peace. Though forcibly and unwillingly displaced by war, violence, oppression and deprivation, refugees are journeying away from insecurity towards safety, recognition of their plight, and ultimately the restoration of peace and the realization of justice.
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Walking to Emmaus Walking to Emmaus
At our first meeting in South Africa, a few months before going to Sweden for the first part of the international youth pilgrimage “Walking to Emmaus”, we were exited to meet each other and to know that we would all be going on a plane. It was a first for all of us so I’m sure you would imagine the excitement you could see on our faces going down the terminal and into the aeroplane.
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Becoming pilgrims: walking alongside our brothers and sisters in Egypt Becoming pilgrims: walking alongside our brothers and sisters in Egypt
Egypt, that ancient and mysterious land where the pyramids of Giza grace the hot desert landscape and the Pharaohs once reigned. A land overflowing with beauty and a historical richness unparalleled in all the globe. Today, it is a place whose regal image has been tarnished by the devastating consequences of revolution, economic decline, and fanatical religious zeal.
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Armenian Genocide Centennial in Beirut – an ecumenical commemoration Armenian Genocide Centennial in Beirut – an ecumenical commemoration
Aram I, Catholicos of the Armenian Apostolic Church, invited church leaders to commemorate the Armenian Genocide Centenial in Beirut, Lebanon, 18-19 July. And many of us came to show solidarity and to pray together.
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My heart is crying – but Pope Tawadros said, “love never ends” My heart is crying – but Pope Tawadros said, “love never ends”
Time for reflection after my visit to Egypt. The story has etched itself into my memory. I can’t leave it behind. It comes to me every day like a constant reminder of the fragility of life, of our mortality, of the courage and faith of our fellow humans that carries us in our darkest and most despondent hours.
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Christian relations with the Al-Azhar University in Cairo Christian relations with the Al-Azhar University in Cairo
Last year in September 2016 the Grand Imam from Al-Azhar University in Cairo visited the WCC in Geneva and the Bossey Ecumenical Institute. This time it has been the turn of the WCC to visit the Al-Azhar University with the Grand Imam and the Muslim Council of Elders.
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The World Council of Churches works for environmental justice The World Council of Churches works for environmental justice
Christians have a long tradition of dominating other peoples and other faith traditions and even some variant Christian groups. From the early church times, Christians have taken seriously the mandate to go to the ends of the earth to convert peoples to Christianity. Christian European immigrants came to North America and were complicit in genocide against the indigenous peoples. Mass killing, displacement, and domination of native peoples are a horrific part of American history from which there remains irreversible damage to the Native American people and their culture.
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Do not be afraid. Do not be afraid.
Thoughts wander in the wind. Emotions bubbling up. I don’t know where to start. So much frustration. So much misunderstanding. So much fear.
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Interreligious dialogue as a part of the Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace Interreligious dialogue as a part of the Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace
As my year as an intern in the Interreligious Dialogue and Cooperation team in the WCC draws to a close, it is time to ponder the changing face of the interfaith movement during the turbulent year of 2015. It is clear that in Europe at least the climate concerning different faiths and Islam in particular took a turn for the worse.
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