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CCA invites applications for the Asian Ecumenical Institute-2018

Participants of Asian Ecumenical Institute 2017

The Christian Conference of Asia (CCA) invites applications for the annual session of the Asian Ecumenical Institute (AEI- 2018).

Focusing on the theme ‘Wider Ecumenism in Asia‘s Pluralistic context’, the AEI-2018 will be held from 15 July to 13 August 2018 at the Payap University in Chiang Mai, Thailand.

The AEI is a month-long annual training programme for young people from various Asian countries come together in an inter-cultural and inter-denominational setting to gain in-depth insights on ecumenism through a variety of learning methodologies.

AEI is designed to increase the knowledge and skills of prospective church and ecumenical leaders in Asia who seek to enhance their engagement in church and society and to assume future leadership positions in the ecumenical movement.

The programme also aims to empower the participants in understanding the concept and ethos of ecumenism while being anchored on a strong sense of rootedness in one’s own faith, tradition, and heritage,- The course outline and the methodology designed for the AEI-2018 will enable the participants to understand the need for  crossing  boundaries of denominational, cultural, social, economic and political strata to recognise the value of  wider ecumenism.

Admissions will be offered  to 25 students who will be selected from among the applicants between ages 25 to 35. Selection of prospective participants will be based on competence, gender and confessional balances, national and sub-regional representations, ability to communicate in English.

The deadline for receiving Applications will be on or before 31 May 2018.

For Application Form and more details about the AEI-2018, please  email <cca.aei@gmail.com> or click the links below:

Asian Ecumenical Institute

AEI 2018 Application Form

(Source: Christian Conference of Asia News)

NCCI gives thanks for the Life and Witness of James Hal Cone

Pic: Wikipedia | James Hal Cone (August 5, 1936 – April 28, 2018)

James Hal Cone (August 5, 1936 – April 28, 2018) was an American theologian, best known for his advocacy of black theology and black liberation theology. His 1969 book Black Theology and Black Power provided a new way to comprehensively define the distinctiveness of theology in the black church. Cone’s work was influential from the time of the book’s publication, and his work remains influential today. His work has been both utilized and critiqued inside and outside the African-American theological community. He was the Charles Augustus Briggs Distinguished Professor of Systematic Theology at Union Theological Seminary in the City of New York until his death.

(Source: Wikipedia – James Hal Cone).

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MAY 15, 2018 : 70 Years of the Nakba, the “Catastrophe”

Pray for and Express Solidarity with Palestinians

This year marks the 70th year of Nakba:  Nakba Day , Yawm an-Nakba, meaning “Day of the Catastrophe” is generally commemorated on 15 May. The day was inaugurated by Yasser Arafat in 1998. For the Palestinians it is an annual day of commemoration of the displacement that preceded and followed the Israeli Declaration of independence in 1948. During the 1948 Palestine War, an estimated 700,000 Palestinians fled or were expelled , and hundreds of Palestinian towns and villages were depopulated  and destroyed. These refugees and their descendants number several million people, divided between Jordan (2 million), Lebanon (427,057), Syria (477,700), the West Bank (788,108) and the Gaza Strip (1.1 million), with at least another quarter of a million internally displaced Palestinians in Israel. The displacement, dispossession and dispersal of the Palestinian people is known to them as an-Nakba, meaning “catastrophe” or “disaster”.

US Embassy to be moved to Jerusalem: President Trump announced late last year that the U.S. will formally recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel – and it looks like the new U.S. embassy in Jerusalem  will open in May 2018 in order to coincide with the 70th anniversary of Israel declaring its independence, the Trump administration said on Feb. 23.The Trump administration’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital was heralded by many pro-Israel activists but decried by Palestinians and America’s Arab allies. Religious leaders, including Pope Francis and Christians living in Israel, have expressed dire concerns that the move would incite unrest in the volatile region.”We are certain that such steps will yield increased hatred, conflict, violence and suffering in Jerusalem and the Holy Land, moving us farther from the goal of unity and deeper toward destructive division,” 13 Patriarchs and leaders of Christian Orthodox communities have written in an open letter to Trump. American Muslims have expressed nearly universal dismay at the move. “In an already volatile region, Mr. Trump’s action will be akin to dousing gasoline on a burning fire,” said Ebrahim Moosa, a professor of Islamic studies at the University of Notre Dame. “The US will also sign itself into irrelevance in Mideast matters…”

Israeli occupation of Palestine: At the heart of the Israel/Palestine conflict today lies the question of the Palestinian territories occupied by Israel since the war of 1967, which include the West Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem. Key issues that have plagued the stalled “peace process” include: Israel’s occupation, Israeli settlements and settlement-building, the Israeli wall, security for Israelis and Palestinians, shared sovereignty over Jerusalem, and the right of return of 3.7 million stateless Palestinian refugees.

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Consultation on Ecumenical Formation and Capacity Building for Young Dalit, Tribal/Adivasi Theologians

National Council of Churches in India – Dalit and Tribal/Adivasi Concerns
in Partnership with
EMW-Germany, Christian Service Agency and Leonard Theological College

Consultation on Ecumenical Formation and Capacity Building for
Young Dalit, Tribal/Adivasi Theologians
1-3 February 2018 | Mahatma Gandhi Hall, Leonard Theological College, Jabalpur

Ecumenism as mission of all churches involves building relationships, challenging the local styles of being church and leading to the sharing of resources by establishing solidarity and accepting the fact that every church is called by God to be a partner in mission, not be isolated. A clear theological self-understanding reflected on the concept of life and mission of the church must be proclaimed with bold options in support of the marginalized people around us. Ecumenism must motivate the church and society to develop a countervailing power in the midst of gloom and despair. Dialogue with people of other faiths and respect of the religious values of our neighbor should be our lifestyle. There is a need to bring an effective awareness among all the Christian communities across India to be united in bringing significant changeswith regards to addressing the evils of caste, creed, colour as well as socio-political, cultural and economic changes which our Indian society has been undergoing from ages and which has seen a rapid growth in the recent times. Therefore it is the need of the hour for the Indian churches and Christian institutions including the theological colleges to work together and work effectively on denominationalism and fundamentalism which can lead to or create differences among the Christian communities and societies.

In order to bridging gaps and helping the young dalit, tribal/ adivasi theologians to understand the gospel in totality, as a gospel that deals with humanity and all creation, helping people towards better life integrated with ecology, and which supports freedom, and stands for human rights and eco dignity,  NCCI-Dalit and Tribal/Adivasi Concerns in partnership with EMW Germany, Leonard Theological College, Jabalpur and Christian Service Agency organized  a three days Consultation on “Ecumenical Formation and Capacity Building for Young Dalit, Tribal/Adivasi Theologians” from 1st -3rd February 2018 at Mahatma Gandhi Assembly Hall, Leonard Theological College, Jabalpur. A total of 41 participants in which 30 Theological Students from twelve different theological colleges/seminaries from the Northern, Eastern and Central regions of India, affiliated to the Senate of Serampore Colleges and 11 Resource Persons participated in the consultation. The consultation started with a creative and participatory worship led by Mr. Pradip Bansrior, Executive Secretary-Dalit and Tribal Concerns-NCCI along with the team of theological students, the reflection was given by Mr. Jianthaolung Gonmei, Executive Secretary- Youth Concerns, NCCI and concluded with the benediction pronounced by Rev. Dr. Naveen Rao, Principal, Leonard Theological College. Following the inaugural worship, Mr. Pradip Bansrior welcomed the delegates and the resource persons and shared the purpose of the consultation and also extended his sincere thanks and gratitude to Rev. Anil Michael, Treasurer- LTC and the administrative body for hosting the consultation in the Leonard Theological College, Jabalpur.

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Statement of the Consultation on Ecumenical Formation and Capacity Building for Young Dalit, Tribal/Adivasi Theologians

Statement of the Consultation on Ecumenical Formation and Capacity Building for
Young Dalit and Tribal/Adivasi Theologians

1 – 3 February 2018 | Leonard Theological College, Jabalpur (MP)

 

We, 30 young theologians from 12 theological colleges across Northern, Eastern and Central India representing different social and cultural identities as well as churches from different parts of India, gathered at Leonard Theological College, Jabalpur from 1st to 3rd of February 2018 for a Consultation on Ecumenical Formation and Capacity Building for Young Dalit, Tribal/Adivasi Theologians organized by NCCI’s Dalit and Tribal/Adivasi Concerns.  During our discussions and deliberations we dealt with many concerns such as trends and development of ecumenical movement from various contextual issues including struggles for Dalits Rights; Rights of indigenous people; Rights of women and children; Youth in the Cyber Age; Human Trafficking, Human Sexuality and Gender Diversities; Prophetic communication; Ecumenical formation; Inter-Religious harmony and Ecological justice.

We affirm that:

  1. God has created humankind in God’s own image. In the household of God, there is no discrimination on the basis of caste, gender, race, creed, or religion.
  2. Unity is the essence of Christianity and the Christian community can transcend differences and divisions by coming together to address social concerns and campaign against evil forces that undermine or violate people’s rights and dignity on the basis of their gender, generation, caste, tribe, ability or sexual orientation.
  3. Our God is the God of love, compassion and justice who always takes the side of the oppressed in their struggle for justice and liberates them from oppressive and unjust systems.
  4. The ecumenical spirit transcends ecclesial realms and facilitates visible unity and symbiotic living with all of God’s creation, peace and reconciliation with people of all faiths, and commitment to social causes.
  5. The Church has to take serious cognisance of the changing socio-political, cultural and technological context, and should engage with the same meaningfully, relevantly and effectively.
  6. The Church is called to remain committed particularly to the cause of Dalit and Tribal/Adivasi communities in her prophetic ministry.

We reject and condemn any discrimination and social injustice within and outside the church, denying the rights to the fullness of life of women, youth, children, Dalits, Tribals/Adivasis, sexual minorities and of nature.

We, therefore, make the following recommendations to the churches and theological institutions for effective ecumenism and social justice:

  1. To declare and accept social diversities in gender, caste, race or creed as designs of God.
  1. To widen the ecumenical movement beyond ecclesial relationships within and among the churches, and even beyond inter-religious relationships to inter-human relationships and integrity of all creation.
  2. To be more inclusive, and to be more sensitive towards sexual minorities and marginalised sections of the society.
  3. To incorporate teachings of peace and reconciliation not only in curricula, but also to practice the same in day to day lives.
  4. To understand and interpret the Scripture in a holistic manner of inclusivity and ensure justice and equity for all creation.
  5. To strengthen prophetic communication with regard to issues of women, children, Dalits and Tribals/Adivasis, sexual minorities and nature.
  6. To publicly affirm the identity of Dalit and Tribal/Adivasi communities and promote their spirituality.
  7. To make use of Dalit/Tribal/Adivasi cultures and traditions in strengthening grassroots ecumenism.

World Day of Prayer (WDP) 2018 – “All God’s Creation is Very Good!”

INFORMED PRAYER & PRAYERFUL ACTION

“ALL GOD’S CREATION IS VERY GOOD”

Dear  Fellow-pilgrims of Justice and Peace,

Greetings of Peace from Women Concerns Ministry of National Council of Churches in India.

It is our pleasure to share with you the Resource Material of World Day of Prayer  2018. The theme of  2018 WDP is “All God’s Creation is Very Good!” .

This year WDP Resource Material is prepared by Suriname WDP Committee, shared by  World Day of Prayer  International Committee (WDPIC)  and contexualized in India  by  Women Concerns Ministry, NCCI.

The WDP is a global ecumenical movement led by Christian Women who join in prayer for peace and justice. It is run under the motto “Informed Prayer and Prayerful Action.” The movement aims to bring together women of various races, cultures and traditions in a yearly common  Day of Prayer as well as in closer fellowship, understanding and action throughout the year.  Every year it is commemorated on the first Friday in March and a  particular country is chosen as country of focus . The  WDP Committee prepares the resource material on particular theme.

 The 2018 Resource material reflects how Women from Suriname lift up their voices to remind us that we are caretakers of God’s creation! How good is God’s creation? That is the question to meditate upon and respond to with a personal commitment to care for creation . They are bringing to our attention the urgent need for caring at a time when more than 180 countries have signed the Paris Agreement on Climate Change: A commitment to take care and heal wounded mother Earth.

Through the worship service, we listen to the multicultural and multi-ethnic people of Suriname. They take us to their communities and through their concerns. History is before our eyes! The flora and fauna is remarkable! Everyday life is weaved into prayers. Through WDP a movement for “informed prayer and prayerful action” we encourage women’s fellowships in India and churches to care of creation  throughout the year .

We encourage you to involve children and youth during the worship as they are our future stewards and care takers of mother Earth. Not only will they carry the legacy of WDP Movement but sow seeds of justice and peace in the world.

We request you to send 3-4 good resolution photographs and brief report immediately and latest by 31st March 2018 so that we can publish it and share it in the NCCI Website  WORLD DAY OF PRAYER ASIA FACEBOOK PAGE and  send Women Concerns ministry report to  WDPIC. The soft copy reports and photographs can be sent by email to aiccw.office.ncci@gmail.com with a copy to ncci.aiccw.moumita@gmail.com

We have already sent the Resource Material to National Women’s Fellowships of member churches of NCCI.   Please share these resource materials with local dioceses, women’s fellowships,  church leaders, ecumenical partners,  theological colleges and Christian institutions.

Looking forward to all your solidarity in practicing and promoting WDP (Informed Prayer and Prayerful Action) movement.

Shanti! Shalom! Salam!

Rev. Moumita Biswas
Executive Secretary
Women’s Concerns Ministry NCCI.

 

DOWNLOAD: World Day of Prayer 2018 WDP Prayer Book

Posted by Women Concerns Ministry of NCCI

 

Letter from WCC General Secretary | WCC’s 70th anniversary.

Please click on link  to see a letter from Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, General Secretary – WCC, updating you on the WCC’s 70th Anniversary and inviting you to participate actively in the celebrations.

Also see the link to the list of events planned so far.

Rev. Dr. Roger Gaikwad,
General Secretary, NCCI.

 

Download –

  1. 18_1 Letter 70th anniversary
  2. 70th Anniversary_Letter to member Churches_Appendix

Week of Prayer for Christian Unity 2018 (Unity Octave)

The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity January 18-25 is an annual celebration observed by Christian churches all over the world. It is symbolic of the visionary prayer of Jesus that Christian disciples may all be one. The sad reality is that we are divided on the basis of religious matters such as traditions, doctrines, practices, and governance, and also on social and political issues as well as economic considerations.

The theme for the 2018 Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, “Your Right Hand, O Lord, Glorious in Power,” is taken from the book of Exodus 15:6. The resources for this year’s Week of Prayer for Christian Unity have been prepared by the churches of the Caribbean. The contemporary Caribbean is deeply marked by the dehumanizing project of colonial exploitation.

Today Caribbean Christians of many different traditions see the hand of God active in the ending of enslavement. It is a uniting experience of the saving action of God which brings freedom. For this reason the choice of the song of Moses and Miriam (Ex 15:1-21), as the motif of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity 2018 was considered a most appropriate one.

The themes of the daily prayer material raise some of the contemporary issues addressed by the churches of the Caribbean. Abuses of human rights are found across the region and we are challenged to consider our manner of welcoming of the stranger into our midst. Human trafficking and modern-day slavery continue to be huge issues. Addiction to pornography and drugs, continue to be serious challenges to all societies. The debt crisis has a negative impact upon the nations and upon individuals. Family life continues to be challenged by the economic restrictions which lead to migration, domestic abuse and violence. The articulations on the prayer themes have however been adapted to the Indian context by the NCCI Secretariat.

Churches all over the globe are called to work together to heal the wounds in the body of Christ. At the same time, need to discern God’s hand at work in bringing about reform, healing and liberation. In other words, churches should be together and work where God is.

Rev. Dr. Roger Gaikwad
General Secretary, NCCI.

 


DOWNLOADS

International Version: ENG 2018 Booklet

Adapted for India: Resources for The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity and Throughout the Year_Eng

 

 

NCCI General Secretary’s Christmas Message 2017

Jesus the Migrant

The word “Christmas” brings popular images of Santa Claus, Carols, New Clothes, Cakes, Drinks, Dances and Feasts to the mind. All such images are expressions of celebration. But what we are celebrating is an event and message of much serious matters. One insight on the significance of the birth of Jesus comes from the hasty migration of Joseph and Mary with the baby Jesus to Egypt. They were fleeing from the wrath of King Herod who ordered that all Jewish male children up to two years of age in Bethlehem and its vicinity be killed. The reason for this massacre was Herod’s fear that a child had been born in Bethlehem about whom some wise men predicted that he would become the King of the Jews. Herod did not want his political authority and power to be challenged and dethroned. Therefore he thought it best to nip the threat in the bud, and get the new born king killed. Since he did not know who this baby king was, he ordered that all male Jewish children up to the age of two years be put to the sword. Therefore Joseph and Mary thought it best to flee to Egypt and protect baby Jesus’ life. They became migrant refugees.

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India Pre-conference of the World Mission Conference

World Council of Churches – Council for World Mission and Evangelism

Conference of the World Mission and Evangelism

India Pre-conference

24 -26 January, 2018 | CNI Bhavan, New Delhi.

The next Conference of the World Mission and Evangelism of the  World Council of Churches is meeting in Arusha, Tanzania from 08th to 13th March 2018 on the theme “Moving in the Spirit: Called to Transforming Discipleship”. The Conference is an opportunity for the global Church, the ecumenical and the mission movements to review and re-examine its present mission patterns in order to make the Gospel relevant by interpreting it in response to the signs of our times.

To facilitate this process of introspection and re-imagination, the National Council of Churches in India – Unity and Mission joining the Church of North India Synod and the WCC – Council for World Mission and Evangelism is organizing a ‘Pre-assembly’ to deliberate upon the need, relevance and engagement of the Indian churches, ecumenical mission organizations in our contemporary context on the theme “Transforming Discipleship: Mission of the Missions”.

This India Pre-Conference is hosted by the Church of North India Synod and facilitated by the NCCI – Unity and Mission. This conference is scheduled to be held in CNI Bhavan, # 16, Pandit Pant Marg, New Delhi from 24th to 26th  January 2018.

Please click the link for the concept note.02. CNI – NCCI – CWME Concept Note for WMC

To know more about the WCC – World Mission Conference, please visit <https://www.oikoumene.org/en/press-centre/events/conference-on-world-mission-and-evangelism-moving-in-the-spirit-called-to-transforming-discipleship>

For Details… Please contact

Rev. R. Christopher Rajkumar
Executive Secretary,
NCCI – Unity and Mission
<mission.ncci@gmail.com>, <mission@ncci1914.com>

Events

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