From the Worldwide Faith News archives

LWF General Secretary Congratulates WCC General Secretary Elect

From "Frank Imhoff" <>
Date Thu, 28 Aug 2003 21:25:48 -0500

LWF General Secretary Congratulates WCC General Secretary Elect Samuel Kobia
Ishmael Noko highlights Kobia's competence in the area of peace and

GENEVA, 28 August 2003 (LWI) - The general secretary of the Lutheran World
Federation (LWF) Rev. Dr Ishmael Noko has congratulated Rev. Dr Samuel Kobia
on his election as general secretary of the World Council of Churches (WCC)
on Thursday, 28 August.
"Dr Kobia will assume his new responsibilities with a broad background and
long experience, both within his church, the Methodist Church in Kenya, and
internationally - particularly within the framework of the WCC," said Noko
when the election results were announced. 
In his statement, Noko especially emphasized Kobia's "competence in the area
of peace and reconciliation" as well as his "strong awareness of the
dimensions of church life in the southern hemisphere, within the great
diversity of the church universal." 
"Dr Kobia also brings to his new position a thorough knowledge of the nature
and challenges of the WCC as an organization. His personal humility and his
ability to listen attentively to others are much appreciated qualities," Noko
continued. "The LWF looks to the WCC as the global body where the churches of
the world may communicate and cooperate on the basis of a common faith in the
Triune God, in the service of Christian unity and the well-being of
Noko also made reference to the close relations on a day-to-day basis between
the church organizations located in the Ecumenical Centre in Geneva. The LWF
and WCC cooperate broadly in the area of emergency response through Action by
Churches Together (ACT) International as well as in communication through
Ecumenical News International (ENI), and in several ongoing programs. "I am
confident that these relations will continue to grow substantially in the
years ahead," said the LWF General Secretary. "I know we are both committed
to close cooperation, seeking to achieve the common goals of our
"May God bless him with great energy and the gifts of discernment and
generosity in his very important calling in the worldwide ecumenical
movement," Noko concluded.
Kobia, an ordained minister of the Methodist Church in Kenya and currently
WCC director and special representative for Africa, received the majority of
WCC Central Committee votes over Canon Dr Trond Bakkevig, a pastor of the
Church of Norway and currently a member of the WCC Central Committee and the
moderator of its Public Issues Committee.
Kobia will succeed Rev. Dr Konrad Raiser who has been general secretary since
1993 and
who will retire at the end of this year. 
(The LWF is a global communion of Christian churches in the Lutheran
tradition. Founded in 1947 in Lund (Sweden), the LWF now has 136 member
churches in 76 countries representing over 61.7 million of the 65.4 million
Lutherans worldwide. The LWF acts on behalf of its member churches in areas
of common interest such as ecumenical and interfaith relations, theology,
humanitarian assistance, human rights, communication, and the various aspects
of mission and development work. Its secretariat is located in Geneva,
[Lutheran World Information (LWI) is LWF' information service. Unless
specifically noted, material presented does not represent positions or
opinions of the LWF or of its various units. Where the dateline of a article
contains the notation (LWI), the material may be freely reproduced with

*     *      *

LWI online at:
PO Box 2100, CH-1211 Geneva 2, Switzerland
Tel: (41.22) 791.63.54
Fax: (41.22) 791.66.30 
Editor's e-mail:

Browse month . . . Browse month (sort by Source) . . . Advanced Search & Browse . . . WFN Home