Press Release No. A13-043/E

20.07.09 21:19

God creates, reconciles and renews life: jubilant worship concludes CEC Assembly

Photo: The Very Rev. Margarethe Isberg

A radical vision for the church where all are welcome and equal has been proclaimed by the Very Rev. Margarethe Isberg at the closing service of the 13th CEC Assembly, which has been meeting in Lyon, France, since Wednesday 15th July.

The Sending Service began with a joyful processional song celebrating the unity of all Christians.  Echoing the theme of Bishop Wolfgang Huber’s bible study earlier in the Assembly, the song included the lines “There is on Lord, one faith, one baptism, there is one God, above all and in all.”

Very Rev. Isberg, Dean of Västerås (Church of Sweden) and outgoing deputy vice-president of CEC was giving the sermon at the closing worship, based on the prophecy of Jeremiah, chapter 31 verses 31-34. “The way a society treats the earth often correlates with the way it treats other oppressed groups.  Traditionally women are linked with the earth as subordinate to men.  Jeremiah’s words challenge this assumption.”

In giving thanks about the work of the Assembly Dean Isberg said it was important to look to the future, especially when reflecting on the Assembly theme, “Called to One Hope in Christ”.  “Christ is coming from the future and meets us as the God who creates, reconciles and renews life…Christ lives in the future and from there he comes to meet us when we live with our hopes set forward.”

In conclusion, Margarethe Isberg said that a Christian view of humanity maintains that all people are created equal and are of equal value. The churches have a vision for a society where all have the opportunity to fulfil our potentials as human beings.

The upbeat Sending Service concluded with a blessing for the more than 800 participants, delegates, staff, stewards and others who had gathered for the 13th CEC Assembly.

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