Faculty, Trustees, Students at WCC Meeting in Korea
30 October–8 November • Off-Campus • Faculty News
The Fr. Alexander Schmemann Professor of Liturgical Theology Dr. Paul Meyendorff recently journeyed to Busan, Korea to attend the 10th Assembly of the World Council of Churches (WCC) as a representative of the Orthodox Church in America (OCA). The Assembly is the highest governing body of the WCC, convening every seven years to review the WCC’s ongoing agenda, formulate public statements of concern and action, and endorse activities and outreach being undertaken by Christian ecclesial bodies around the world.
In addition to conducting its ordinary business and electing officers and Central Committee members, the Assembly issued statements concerning the perilous situation of Christians in Syria, Egypt, and the Middle East. In its business sessions, it elected a new top governing body to lead the WCC, and appointed eight presidents for the WCC's respective "regions." His Beatitude John X, Patriarch of the Greek Orthodox Church of Antioch and All the East, was elected to represent the Eastern Orthodox, while Karekin II, the Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians, will represent the Oriental Orthodox churches.
The Orthodox at the Assembly also met separately to discuss issues of common concern. In an expression of unity, both the Eastern and Oriental Orthodox attended liturgy together on Sunday November 3 at the Annunciation of the Theotokos parish, Metropolis of Korea, Ecumenical Patriarchate. "The Assembly provided a wonderful opportunity to meet with other Orthodox throughout the world," noted Dr. Meyendorff. "It was especially remarkable to see the number of St. Vladimir's graduates who are in leadership positions in various Eastern and Oriental Orthodox Churches."
In addition to Dr. Meyendorff, other attendees associated with St. Vladimir’s were: Trustee His Eminence The Most Rev. Hilarion (Alfeyev), metropolitan of Volokolamsk and chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate Department of External Affairs; Trustee Dr. Anne Glynn Mackoul; Trustee His Grace The Rt. Rev. Maxim (Vasiljevic), bishop of the Western Diocese of the Serbian Orthodox Church in North and South America; Trustee H.G. Metropolitan Zachariah Mar Nicholovos, metropolitan of the Northeast American Diocese of the Malankara Church of North America; Alumnus H.E. Metropolitan Mor Polycarpus Aydin of the Syrian Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch and All the East; Alumnus His Grace The Right Rev. Alexander (Golitzin), Bishop of Toledo and the Bulgarian Diocese, OCA; Alumnus His Grace The Right Rev. Irinej (Dobrijevic) of Australia and New Zealand of the Serbian Orthodox Church; Seminarian Lijin Raju; and Mariam Ceena Varghese, SVOTS lecturer in Malayalam.