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What could the World Council of Churches do regarding global migration? What could the World Council of Churches do regarding global migration?
It's true: migration is a common phenomenon in human history. People have always been moving from one place to the other either forced by circumstances or by choice. However, in our post-colonial, post-cold-war world of globalization, with increased inequality both with in countries and between countries as well as with increased awareness and enhanced transport, the scale of human migration continues to grow every year.
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A dream across the barbed-wire fence A dream across the barbed-wire fence
A little girl, barely four years old, crawls underneath a barbed-wire fence at the Serbian-Hungarian border. Her face is straight as she glances ahead, irradiated by sunbeams; her fingers are cramped into the muddy soil. Hundreds of thousands refugees are on the move as I write these lines. A reality, which for so many in Europe these past years had remained remote, suddenly becomes close and subject of fierce controversies.
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Boats, borders and Christmas parallels Boats, borders and Christmas parallels
We did not realize that we would get so close. We had imagined maybe seeing boats from afar, having to remind ourselves that what we saw in the water was people. As we stood on the beach in Molivos, there was no question about the reality of the situation as the boats came in. 45 people on boats designed for no more than ten. Most of them wore life vests, but not all. The entire range of emotions was expressed just after reaching land. As some took selfies and thanked God for reaching safely, others cried out in despair after seeing their own death in front of them on the terrifying journey.
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Preaching and practice in stormy times Preaching and practice in stormy times
COP 21. Weather! We have always discussed it, several times a day. What could we expect this day, the next day? At least in my country, Norway, where the weather may change several times per day, it is always a theme for a small-talk. Until some years ago we could not imagine that we had to discuss rain storms and drought, ice and heat because we could make a difference. Or that human behaviour already had made a difference.
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Paris Attacks, COP21 and the WCC: Embracing the Other Paris Attacks, COP21 and the WCC: Embracing the Other
Friday November 13, 2015's terror attacks in Paris, which followed on attacks in Baghdad and Beirut and preceded the attack in Yola, break my heart. All such attacks do. What makes people want to kill innocent people enjoying their Friday night with friends and family at a concert and in restaurants? Such attacks not only kill the bodies, they deeply wound the spirit.
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From London to Paris walking by faith in hope From London to Paris walking by faith in hope
It has been ten days since the Pilgrimage2Paris set off on their mammoth journey. I remember the excitement as the pilgrims arrived last Friday at St Martins in the Field in London. I was eager to meet each pilgrim and find out who these people were who were willing to give up their time over a fortnight to walk from London to the climate talks in Paris. They have come from all walks of life and from all corners of the country, each sharing a strong commitment to put their faith into action and tackle climate change.
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Keeping the faith and working for gender justice Keeping the faith and working for gender justice
The Bible is a constant source of encouragement, especially for the women in our West African churches. It helps us keeping the faith and continuing to work for justice in gender relationships. Listening to the word of God rhythms our daily life, it is like a silent song recurrently sung inside, no matter what hardships we undergo.
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Pilgrims for climate justice Pilgrims for climate justice
After the terrorist attacks last week, I think we can better understand the feelings of the disciples of Emmaus: sadness, lots of questions, fear, despair. But, however terrible the episode that had occurred, it didn’t paralyze them. They walked to Emmaus. Maybe they were escaping from Jerusalem, full of fear, but they walked, they were pilgrims…
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Be anxious for nothing Be anxious for nothing
Worries, like weeds, seem to thrive. The more you feed them, the more they grow. In Matthew 6, Jesus tells us not to worry about food, drink, clothing, or even the next day. He illustrates with magnificent images. The carefree lilies blooming in the field. And then there are the birds that fly about, singing in the trees. You could be jealous, for they worry about nothing. They are carefree, even though their lives are transitory and threatened.
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A year full of promise for sustainable development, water and sanitation A year full of promise for sustainable development, water and sanitation
Year 2015 is an important milestone for all those who care for the environment, climate and water. Arguably it could be remembered along with 1992, as one of those “green years”. For networks such as the Ecumenical Water Network, who are engaged with both water concerns as well as other ecological issues such as climate change, this year has been an excellent opportunity to highlight issues of water and sustainable development.
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