Read the Moderator Right Rev Hamish Galloway's Peace Sunday 7 August message to the Church. Download a designed version here and see plain text below.
Where are the peacemakers, these blessed people that Jesus calls the children of God?
Around 5,000 will gather in Karlsruhe, Germany, at the end of the month for the 11th Assembly of the World Council of Churches (WCC). The rallying call and theme for the Assembly is,
‘Christ’s love moves the world to reconciliation and unity’.
It is a miracle of sorts that this is happening in our fractured and discordant world. Our Christian movement has by no means been immune from fracture and discord! And yet through the work of the WCC, people are gathering from around the globe representing a huge diversity of churches. Conversations will take place on a huge array of issues, theological and missional, related to this wonderful theme of reconciliation and unity.
As a representative of our Church, I have been fascinated by preparations for this Assembly which I will attend. It has opened my eyes to the positive influence the WCC has on the world stage. It models a coming together of diverse communities rather than separation into our little homogeneous and comfortable bubbles. It centres on our unity in Christ as a platform for transformation in society.
This is a message so needed in our world right now. A world with increasing polarization. A world where conflicts rage. A world where this is highlighted daily, as shocking images of destruction are beamed into our living rooms from the Ukraine.
Just as this WCC gathering has drawn me in to a real and deeper engagement with issues of reconciliation and unity, may Peace Sunday on 7 August also be a catalyst for real and deeper engagement for we who are called by Christ peacemakers, children of God.
Or, as in the lovely verse from James 3, may we be ‘peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness’.
Peace Sunday is the closest Sunday to 6 August, Hiroshima Day—this year 7 August.
- Download Christian World Service Peace Sunday worship resources here.
- More on the 11th Assembly of the World Council of Churches (WCC) here.
Right Rev Hamish Galloway
Moderator Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand