Among the many international guests at the Heavenly Days on the Heath, which unfolded during the Ascension holidays in Herning in Denmark, was Olav Fykse Tveit, General Secretary of the World Council of Churches.
Fykse Tveit was invited to Herning by the Council on International Relations of the Evangelical-Lutheran Church in Denmark and participated in various events. Among them were a discussion round at the Global Goals Café at Herning Library addressing church commitment to the UN Global Goals, a bible reflection session in the City Church discussing the story of Jesus walking on water as well as a presentation about future and potential of churches globally.
Fykse Tveit had the opportunity to talk to many different people from the Danish church, including representatives from the Council on International Relations.
Among the topics discussed were issues and topics such as the grave challenges persecuted Christians and other religious minorities have been facing - a talking point Fykse Tveit is very concerned with - as well as the discussion about how churches can counterbalance the growing polarization and hostile political rhetoric which is currently pervasive in communities all over the world.
In this context Fykse Tveit also addressed the agenda the World Council of Churches will be working on over the next couple of years in order to prepare for the 2021 general assembly in Karlsruhe (Germany) which goes under the motto “Christ’s Love moves the World to Reconciliation and Unity.”
Furthermore, Fykse Tveit reiterated that it had been for the first time, since in Uppsala 1968, that the World Council of Churches had gathered for a general assembly on European ground. For this very reason he invited Danish churches to contribute to the upcoming church meeting to make the global church aware of church life on the European continent.
The theme ”Christ’s Love moves the World to Reconciliation and Unity” refers to, among others, freedom of religion and belief, as well as the peace-and-reconciliation-work which has always been characterizing the World Council of Churches. As Fykse Tveit said during his presentation at the Global Goals Café: ”Maybe you are not all aware of it, but the World Council of Churches is actually conveying peace negotiations on the Korean peninsula”!
At Heavenly Days on the Heath, Fykse Tveit received very positive responses when presenting the theme “Christ’s love”. The theme puts Christ in focus, regarding the question: “What does it mean to be a Christian?”, and therefore stressing the modern Christian identity as it is perceived and lived for instance in interreligious dialogue work.