World Council of Churches
Pursue the goal of the visible unity of the Church. This involves a process of renewal and change in which member churches pray, worship, discuss and work together.
The World Council of Churches was formally founded in August 1948, in Amsterdam (Netherlands), by 147 churches, carrying on the activity of Life and Work Movement and of the Faith and Order Movement, two bodies which, prior to World War II, proposed the setting up of such a Council. Originally European/North American centred, the Council steadily became more world-oriented in fact as well as in inspiration. In December 1961, in New Delhi (India), at the WCC 3rd Assembly, International Missionary Council (IMC) merged with WCC to become Commission on World Mission and Evangelism of the World Council of Churches (CWME) and eventually the Commission itself was merged into the WCC programmatic structure. Among the many conspicuous achievements of the WCC, working in collaboration with churches and other partners, have been its early work for a Universal Declaration of Human Rights, its decades-long campaign against apartheid, its pathbreaking consensus on Baptism and Eucharist and Ministry, its deeply influential Decade of Solidarity with Women, its production with the Vatican of materials for the annual Prayer for Christian Unity, its programmes for addressing climate change, its pioneering programme addressing pastoral dimensions of HIV and AIDS in Africa, its sponsorship of ecumenical observers in Israel/Palestine, and its recent successful campaigns for an independent South Sudan, a global Ecumenical Water Network, and passage of an international Arms Trade Treaty at the UN.