8th assembly/50th anniversary

Together on the Way
5.3. Globalization

Globalization is not simply an economic issue. It is a cultural, political, ethical and ecological issue.

Increasingly, Christians and churches find themselves confronted by the new and deeply challenging aspects of globalization which vast numbers of people face, especially the poor. How do we live our faith in the context of globalization?

Recommendations (Adopted)
1. It is our deep conviction that the challenge of globalization should become a central emphasis of the work of the WCC, building upon many significant efforts of the World Council of Churches in the past. The vision behind globalization includes a competing vision to the Christian commitment to the oikoumene, the unity of humankind and the whole inhabited earth. This recognition should be reflected in our efforts to develop our Common Understanding and Vision as well as in the related activities of member churches and other ecumenical bodies. Although globalization is an inescapable fact of life, we should not subject ourselves to the vision behind it, but strengthen our alternative ways towards visible unity in diversity, towards an oikoumene of faith and solidarity.

2. The logic of globalization needs to be challenged by an alternative way of life of community in diversity. Christians and churches should reflect on the challenge of globalization from a faith perspective and therefore resist the unilateral domination of economic and cultural globalization. The search for alternative options to the present economic system and the realization of effective political limitations and corrections to the process of globalization and its implications are urgently needed.

3. We express our appreciation of the call by the World Alliance of Reformed Churches' 23rd General Council (Debrecen, 1997) for a committed process of recognition, education and confession (processus confessionis) regarding economic injustice and ecological destruction and encourage the WCC member churches to join this process.

4. In view of the unaccountable power of transnational corporations and organizations who often operate around the world with impunity, we commit ourselves to working with others on creating effective institutions of global governance.

5. It is of high priority to improve the capacity of the WCC to respond to the challenge of globalization with a more coherent and comprehensive approach. This includes especially close co-operation and co-ordination of work on economic and ecological issues.

6. Work on globalization should build upon and strengthen existing initiatives of churches, ecumenical groups and social movements, support their cooperation, encourage them to take action, and form alliances with other partners in civil society working on issues pertinent to globalization as, particularly: