Taiwan Statement

Photo 140868137 | Earth Taiwan © Dreamstime.com

On behalf of the World Methodist Council, General Secretary Ivan Abrahams offers prayers and condolences to the people of Taiwan and their loved ones following the severe earthquake there on 3 April 2024. He calls on all people, and especially the Methodist family, to remember those affected by this 7.2 magnitude earthquake.

Death and destruction are widespread on the Islan, but the severest destruction was near Hualien, which was closest to the center. Following the earthquake, Taiwan has experienced more than 100 aftershocks.

Prayers for comfort for the injured and bereaved will continue as well as calls for assistance to those needing help with places to stay, reconstruction, and day-to-day supplies. 

God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though the waters roar and foam, and the mountains quake with their surging. Psalm 46:1-3 (NIV)

Statement on the situation in the Middle East

The Management Team of the World Methodist Council, meeting in Cape
Town, South Africa, on March 11th/12 th , calls on Methodists world-wide to join
in prayer for the people of Gaza, the occupied Palestinian territories and Israel
at this time of unprecedented and deepening crisis.

We condemn unequivocally the indiscriminate killing by Hamas of innocent
Israeli civilians and the taking of hostages, men, women and children, which
has precipitated the current situation. We are appalled by the killing of
thousands of innocent civilians in Gaza in the continued and intensive bombing
of the enclave and its cities by Israeli forces. While affirming the right of the
State of Israel to defend itself, we urge the immediate recognition of
international law in respect of civilian populations and occupied territories.

We join the many calls for an immediate cessation of hostilities in order that
adequate humanitarian aid may reach the people of Gaza who are without
power, water, food and medical supplies and are living in increasingly desperate
conditions, now amounting to famine.

Ps 130.1 Out of the depths we cry to you, O Lord; O Lord, hear our voice.

“On The Move” – Second World Methodist Council Consultation on Migration September 4-7, 2023, in Manila, Philippines

On September 4-7, 2023, a group of about 25 people representing various member churches of the
World Methodist Council (WMC) and all the world regions gathered in Manila, Philippines. Hosted
by the Global Ministries Regional Office and The United Methodist Church in the Philippines and
meeting in Shalom Hotel in Malate, Manila, owned by the United Church of Christ in the
Philippines, also a member church of the WMC, the participants engaged in migration matters in
preparation for the World Methodist Conference August 13-18, 2024, in Gothenburg, Sweden under
the theme “On The Move.” WMC Rev Dr Jong Chun “JC” Park stated in his welcome speech: “The
World Methodist Conference will gather next year with the theme ‘On the Move: Migration,
Pilgrimage and Guiding Lights.’ Many people from the global South have been already crossing the
abyssal line dividing metropolitan and colonial societies. They are on the move. Therefore, God is
on the move with the people of God. Yes, the Church has to be on the move, too. This is the Kairos
moment for a call to be the Church in a new way.”


Discussions at the Consultation were grounded in prayer, bible studies and theological reflections.
In an interactive learning environment, participants listened to migrants and shared experiences of
ministries with migrants and refugees in various parts of the world. Meeting in Asia, reports of
advocacy and accompaniment of Filipino migrant workers, information on a Christian presence in
the Middle East, on the tripartite network Churches Witnessing with Migrants and the situation of
North Korean Refugees were received. An interactive map was created to capture challenges and
opportunities for cooperation. Reports dealt with root causes like climate change, economic
injustice, and armed conflicts.


WMC General Secretary Bishop Ivan M. Abraham summarizes his experiences: “The second
consultation on Migration once again reaffirmed the people called Methodists were “on the move”
in their response to migration wherever it occurs as a result of food insecurity, drought, violence or
climate change. It was inspiring to hear what is happening in the ‘global parish’ – stories of struggle
as well as some victories. The most heart rendering was listening to Methodists from the small
island states who are not able to mitigate the effects of climate change and are forced to migrate.
What emerged from the consultation following the global pandemic is that everything in the world
is interrelated; ‘if one nation sneezes we are all bound to catch a cold’. For this reason, ‘we must act
and we must act now’”.


In a statement (https://worldmethodistcouncil.org/2023/09/18/a-statement-of-the-second-
consultation-on-migration-of-the-world-methodist-council/
) the Consultation urges the World
Methodist Council and its member churches to dismantle past and present complicity in causing
forced migration, to reimagine the Scriptural calling in which all welcomed as strangers, to live in
solidarity with migrants and refugees and to actively engage in prayer and discernment in
preparation for the 2024 World Methodist Conference.


The Consultation also sends a resolution to the World Methodist Council, to keep global migration
as a primary focus of learning, reflection, and action during the coming quinquennium.


Nussloch, Germany, September 18,2023

Rosemarie Wenner, World Methodist Council – Geneva Secretary

Praying and Acting Together

WEEKEND OF PRAYER AND ACTION AGAINST HUNGER October 14-16,2023 under the theme: SHARING FOOD WITH
THE HUNGRY with reference to Isaiah 58:6-12. The World Methodist Council represented by Geneva
Secretary Rosemarie Wenner has been playing an active role in working on a liturgy for local
congregations, study material on the 10 Commandments of Food, including a child friendly version,
videos, and booklets. Through worship, study, and advocacy we actively engage towards a world
without hunger in a time when more and more people are starving because of inequality, climate
change and armed conflicts. General Secretary Ivan M. Abrahams extends an invitation to join the
campaign.

World Methodist Council Statement on the death of His Eminence Dr. Sunday Coffie Mbang

A big tree has fallen in the Methodist forest!


It was with sadness that the President and Officers of the World Methodist Council learned of the
passing of His Eminence Sunday Coffie Mbang on 16th May 2023 at the age of 86.


Sunday Mbang was a man of unusual courage and steadfast principles. His visionary leadership
gifts and skills were recognized very early in his ministry, and it came as no surprise when he
was elected as the second Prelate of the Methodist Church Nigeria, an office he held for two
decades. He was also elected as the second African President of the World Methodist Council.


His Eminence Mbang worked tirelessly for justice, peace, and reconciliation in the church and
society. He was honored by many organizations, including the World Methodist Council Peace
Award, the Order of Niger, and Honorary Doctorates from the Baptist Seminary Ogbomosho,
Oyo State, and the University of Nigeria Nsukka, Nsakka, Enugu State.


His Eminence provided courageous leadership as President of the Christian Association of
Nigeria during the dark days of Military dictatorship. He also worked with the Muslim
leadership to ensure religious harmony and peaceful coexistence of people of different faiths.


World Methodist Council General Secretary commenting on the passing of Sunday Mbang said,
“He was an iconic leader of immense compassion, integrity, and wisdom, a role model for a
younger generation of ministers like myself. We all drew inspiration, confidence, and hope from
our ‘father in the faith’ who was unwilling to settle for nothing less than our full potential in
exercising the gifts God gave us.”


Even in his retirement, His Eminence Sunday Mbang contributed significantly to support
colleagues through his wise counsel, advancing mission and development.


The WMC passes sincere condolences to the Mbang family during their time of bereavement.
We owe the family a great debt of gratitude for sharing a father, uncle, and grandfather with us.
Our lives are much richer because of him.


We will miss his mischievous smile, his impish laughter, his big heart, his magnanimous spirit,
and his warm friendship. We give thanks to God for his life and ministry.


Sleep well, dear father. Sleep well in the sure and certain hope of the Resurrection.

STATEMENT ON EARTHQUAKE IN TURKEY AND SYRIA

On behalf of the World Methodist Council, Bishop Ivan Abrahams conveyed condolences to the Turkish and Syrian governments and relatives of people who lost loved ones in the earthquake that struck in the early hours of Monday morning.

Five thousand people are known to have died, and thousands more have been left destitute. Abrahams said; “This tragedy requires a global response, and he appealed to Methodists people and relief agencies to support the search and rescue efforts and assist the survivors. “Our hearts go out to all those who are bereaved and we continue to pray for a speedy recovery for the injured.”   

STATEMENT BY THE WORLD METHODIST COUNCIL ON THE PASSING OF POPE EMERITUS BENEDICT
XVI

Together with other World Communions, the World Methodist Council extends its condolences
to His Holiness Pope Francis and the entire Catholic Church on the death of Pope Emeritus
Benedict XVI.

Pope Benedict was a towering intellectual figure who published sixty-six books, three
encyclicals, and three apostolic exhortations. His support of informed theological dialogue
between Churches, including the dialogue between the World Methodist Council and the
Roman Catholic Church, was a hallmark of his pontificate. Pope Benedict’s impact on Christian
unity through prayer and theological discourse is an enduring legacy of his ministry. 

On learning of the death of Pope Emeritus Benedict’s death, the President of the World
Methodist Council, Rev. Dr. JC Park, commented, “His most significant contribution has been
the spiritual and theological retrieval of the uniqueness of Jesus. His magnum opus Jesus of
Nazareth, is the living witness of Jesus ‘who is close to the Father’s heart.’” (John 1:18)

May Benedict rest in peace and rise in glory.

SAD DEMISE OF THE MOST REVD. DR. ANAND CHANDU LAL, FORMER MODERATOR OF THE CHURCH OF NORTH INDIA AND FORMER BISHOP OF THE DIOCESE OF AMRITSAR, CNI

All Partners in Mission,

With much sorrow it is shared that the Most Revd. Dr. Anand Chandu Lal, former Moderator of the Church of North India and former Bishop of the Diocese of Amritsar (CNI) departed this life today, Saturday, 17th December, 2022.  

We are thankful to God for the life, witness and leadership of the Most Revd. Dr. Anand Chandu Lal in the Church of North India, especially in the Diocese of Amritsar. We believe that the contribution he made to the Church at large will always be cherished with gratitude.

As Moderator of the Church of North India he brought in new theological dimensions and insights into the process of Ministerial formation in the Rural & Dalit context of the Church by introducing the Towards Holistic Understanding of Mission program at the CNI Synod level which left an indelible imprint on the life, mission and Ministry of the Church.

As Bishop of the Diocese, he raised the Diocese of Amritsar, Church of North India from scratch and brought about a legal identity and financial stability in the face of many legal & property matters and created a congenial atmosphere to carry out the pastoral care ministry among the Churches in the Diocese. 

On behalf of the entire Church of North India family, especially my brother Bishops and the Office Bearers of the CNI Synod, I express my deepest condolences to the bereaved household. May God grant His peace to all those who are grieving for this great loss.

May the soul of the faithful, the Most Revd. Dr. Anand Chandu Lal rest in peace, and rise in glory.

With prayers 

THE MOST REVD. DR. P. K. SAMANTAROY

GENERAL SECRETARY, CNI SYNOD