According to the CEC Constitution, the Assembly is the "highest authority" of CEC (art. 5.1). It is held every six years.
The beginning of CEC
The movement which led to the creation of the Conference of European Churches dates back to the period of the cold war. The fragmented and divided Europe of the 1940s and 1950s needed to surmount political divisions to devote itself anew to the peoples torn apart by the Second World War.
The Constitution of CEC
At first the organisation represented a loose association of churches, but with the adoption of a Constitution at the 1964 Assembly a significant step was taken towards forming a regional conference of churches. This Assembly was held at sea, aboard the m.v. Bornholm, in order to overcome last-minute visa difficulties.
The fifth Assembly in 1967, held in Pörtschach, Austria, created a full time secretariat as from April 1968. Subsequent Assemblies were held in Nyborg Strand (1971), Engelberg, Switzerland (1974), Chania, Crete (1979), Stirling, Scotland (1986), Prague, former CSFR (1992) when a radically revised Constitution was adopted, Graz, Austria (1997) and Trondheim, Norway (2003).
The report from the 2003 12th CEC Assembly in Trondheim can be accessed here