The leader of one of the world's largest Pentecostal congregations has reaffirmed his church's commitment to support the World Council of Churches' 10th Assembly, which is due to take place in Busan, Korea, in 2013.
Meeting with the WCC General Secretary,the Rev Dr Olav Fykse Tveit at the Edinburgh 2010 world Christianity conference, the Rev Dr Young-Hoon Lee, Senior Pastor of the Yoido Full Gospel Church said his congregation is very interested and keen to be involved with the forthcoming WCC Assembly.
“The WCC can expect to receive [the] full support of the Pentecostal church in Korea for the 10th Assembly”, Lee told Tveit.
With about 830,000 members, the Yoido Full Gospel Church, located in Seoul, is considered the largest Pentecostal congregation in South Korea. Lee currently serves as its Senior Pastor and as the General Superintendent of the Assemblies of God in Korea, to which his church belongs. Through its membership in the National Council of Churches in Korea, the Assemblies of God have from the outset supported the choice of Korea as venue for the 10th WCC Assembly.
The affirmation is of enormous significance to the WCC, which brings together Orthodox, Protestant, Anglican and indigenous churches across the world, and collaborates with the Roman Catholic Church, but has been historically weaker in its relations with, and involvement of, Pentecostal and Evangelical churches.
“We are grateful for the prospect of a fruitful cooperation of the Yoido Full Gospel Church with our member churches in Korea around the 10th WCC Assembly in Busan”, said General Secretary Tveit. “The support of the Yoido Full Gospel Church highlights the significance of having a WCC Assembly in the Korean peninsula”, he added.
For Tveit, “the perspective of the Yoido Full Gospel Church contributing to the WCC Assembly opens up new possibilities for the call to work for Christian unity, even beyond the fellowship of WCC member churches”.
Both Lee and Tveit are participating in the 2-6 June Edinburgh 2010 conference, together with some 300 delegates from over 60 countries and virtually all Christian traditions. The event commemorates the historic 1910 World Mission Conference which took place in the Scottish capital one hundred years ago and seeks to provide new perspectives on Christian mission for the 21st century.