Tanzanian and Swedish church leaders hold joint retreat
Bishops issue shared statement on proclaiming the gospel in the public space
LWI - Lutheran bishops from Sweden and Tanzania have met together to discern ways of supporting each other’s ministry through prayer, service and public witness.
At a 6-8 May retreat in Moshi, Tanzania, 18 bishops from the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania (ELCT) and 13 from the Church of Sweden (CoS) gathered with the goals of getting “to know each other as leaders in the one Church of Jesus Christ, to strengthen trust between us and our churches and to understand how contexts shape our churches.” It was the second such joint bishops’ conference between two of the largest member churches of The Lutheran World Federation (LWF).
Reflection and practical implementation
Using materials prepared by the LWF for the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, the church leaders reflected on the theme of proclaiming the gospel and being church in the public space. Speaking from their very different contexts, they focused on the importance of challenging injustice, fostering interfaith dialogue, scaling up commitment to climate justice, engaging with young people and promoting diversity and equality for women at leadership level.
The bishops also visited two church-run institutions, a medical center and a school for deaf pupils, to see how the ELCT has been responding to the needs of the local community.
At the end of the meeting, the church leaders issued a joint statement, pledging to pray for each other’s needs and to step up their commitment to diakonia, advocacy and Christian education.