His Holiness Aram I chaired the meetings of the World Council of Churches’ (WCC) Officers and Executive Committee on February 12-13 in Porto Alegre–Brazil.
These meetings preceded the 9th Assembly of the WCC to be held on February 14-23 in Porto Alegre. About 5000 people will attend the assembly. The theme of the Assembly was–"God–in your grace–transform the world."
His Holiness spoke about the challenges the world faces today and highlighted the importance of the role of the ecumenical movement. Aram I considered the WCC 9th Assembly a cornerstone and called on churches to carefully and responsibly plan the future work of WCC.
He said–"This 9th Assembly takes place in a period of world history when values are in decline–visions are uncertain and hopes are confused; when injustice is spreading and peace is almost unattainable; when violence and insecurity are becoming dominant in all spheres of human life."
Women and youth pre-Assembly meetings were also held on February 11-13. Rev. Fr. Housig Mardirosian–Mrs. Lucy Devletian–Miss Vanna Kitsinian–Mr. Hrair Djamboulian–Mrs. Narine Khosrovian–and Miss Carla Khijoyian took part in these meetings representing the Catholicosate of Cilicia.
Apart from attending the assembly sessions–the delegates will also participate in several sub-committees created by the Assembly.