WEA Head Seeks to Unite with S. Korea's Top Church Leaders

( [email protected] ) May 10, 2007 11:54 AM EDT

The head of the World Evangelical Alliance is meeting with South Korea’s top Christian leaders this week in an effort to unite and build partnerships between the largest evangelical body in the world and the churches in South Korea, which contain some of world’s largest congregations.

Geoff Tunnicliffe, international director of the WEA, visited the Korea National Council of Churches (KNCC) on Thursday, where he met with General Secretary the Rev. Kwon Oh-Sung, according to Seoul-based newspaper Christian Today Korea.

The two leaders shared about their organizations’ focuses and discussed mutual concerns on global issues such as poverty and AIDS.

In addition, they talked about the tension between North and South Korea and how the two organizations can help promote peace on the peninsula.

Tunnicliffe – whose organization represents some 420 million evangelical Christians worldwide – arrived in South Korea on Monday and began his official tour on Tuesday morning with a formal visit to the Christian Council of Korea (CCK).

That evening, the WEA head met with the president of the Korean Evangelical Fellowship (KEF), Kim Myung-hyuk, and its honorary president, Jung Jin-kyung, according to Christian Today Korea.

Kim and Jung are the founders of KEF and seniors who have contributed to the establishment of the Evangelical Fellowship of Asia (EFA). KEF currently has a membership of over 500 evangelicals which holds monthly meetings on how to unite churches within evangelicalism.

During the WEA-KEF meeting, the leaders shared their views on the world evangelical movement and the commission of Korean evangelicals in the world before coming to an agreement to continue to develop the unity and collaboration between the WEA and KEF.

One of the concerns expressed by the KEF president was the religious tension between Christianity and Islam.

“The conflict between partly exclusive evangelical Christianity and Islam in America is deepening more and more,” noted Kim to Tunnicliffe, according to Christian Today Korea.

“As a former missionary to South America and as a leader of the Canada church, I believe you could contribute greatly in decreasing the radical religious confrontations.”

Kim also emphasized, “At this point, I think expanding evangelicalism through the understanding and cooperation between Muslims and Christians, and executing the commission of world mission is the most important contribution WEA can make for the world church.”

Tunnicliffe will attend a monthly prayer meeting hosted by KEF on Friday.