The General Secretary of the World Communion of Reformed Churches (WCRC) has issued a statement in response to the news of Pope Benedict XVI’s intention to step down at the end of this month. A message issued today by the Pope says he is withdrawing due to failing health.
“WCRC received this news with surprise and concern,” Setri Nyomi says in a message sent to Cardinal Koch, the head of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. “Although Pope Benedict has not served long, he has become known for his commitment to the church’s mission and its people.”
“We pray for his health. It is our hope that the Pope will find relief and rest once he no longer carries the burden of service inherent to his role,” Nyomi says.
Nyomi who is a Ghanaian theologian and pastor adds, “We recognize the concern this unexpected transition will cause Catholics worldwide and will keep them and the church leadership in our prayers.”
The General Secretary says WCRC will maintain its commitment to ecumenical relations with the Catholic Church during this time of transition and into the future.
“We are committed to ongoing dialogue with the Catholic Church on matters of faith, doctrine and understanding of Christian mission in the contemporary world,” Nyomi states.
WCRC represents 80 million Christians in 108 countries. Its member churches are active worldwide in initiatives supporting economic, climate and gender justice, mission, and cooperation among Christians of different traditions.
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