We have just returned from 3 weeks in South Korea and Hong Kong. We will try to write more about what we did in a later blog, but for now John writes…
I was recently invited to attend the World Council of Churches (WCC) 10th Assembly in Busan, South Korea as an adviser with the Ecumenical Disability Advocates Network (EDAN). The assembly was a gathering of about 6000 people from different denominations and from different parts of the world.
I first attended a WCC assembly in Harare, Zimbabwe some 14 years ago, and it has been amazing to see how much disabled people have been included in the WCC’s agenda. The ‘issue’ of disability has been greatly improved over these years, although there is still a long way to go.
My reflections on attending are firstly that I was very privileged to be there and also that I was greatly encouraged and blessed by being part of an amazing group of people from different parts of the world. Each one trying to encourage, cajole or simply nag their respective churches to be more open to the God given gifts which have been given to disabled people – for the benefit of God’s Church.
I would also want to thank God for what he has done through the EDAN participants within the Assembly. One highlight was seeing one of the EDAN participants leading the morning worship – not on a disability issue, but just leading as part of the daily life of the Assembly.
Another joy was also being able to communicate to some of the people who were outside the Assembly, protesting at the WCC’s liberal theological stance on certain issues. I was able to speak and encourage them that there were evangelical, bible-believing Christians inside, and that their prayers were valued and needed. They were wonderful, generous, caring and inclusive – so much so that they invited a friend and I to give a brief testimony / thought.
My overall feeling of having attended this Assembly, was that I have been blessed by meeting some amazing South Korean people, and that there were times when the Spirit of God seemed evident at the WCC.