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NCC 2009 News Service Archives

Look here for links to NCC 2009 news releases that are no longer among the most recent.


January 6, 2009, Washington  ̶  Advocacy Days A new congress and a new administration will be grappling with the toughest issues in decades this March 13-16, 2009, when more than 700 persons of faith arrive from around the country to press their views on peace, justice, the environment and economic fairness.

January 6, 2009, Philadelphia – Peace Gathering Three historic peace churches are hosting an ecumenical gathering here next week to stress the urgent need to work for peace in the world. 

January 9, 2009 – Gaza Prayer  Leaders of three faiths that trace their origins back to a common ancestor -- the Patriarch Abraham -- joined their hearts and pens today to form a common prayer for peace between Israel, Gaza and among all nations.

January 11, 2009, Washington – Obama Preacher  President-Elect Obama has invited the Rev. Dr. Sharon Watkins to preach at the National Prayer Service in the National Cathedral on January 21.

January 13, 2009, New York – Kaboth Named  Kurt Kaboth, who has been serving as Interim Director of Development for the National Council of Churches USA since April 2008, has been named to the full-time position by the Rev. Dr. Michael Kinnamon, NCC General Secretary.

January 13, 2009, Philadelphia  – Kinnamon Peace Greeting  NCC General Secretary told the opening session of an ecumenical peace conference here that peace is the message of the church ecumenical.

January 14, 2009, Philadelphia – Kinnamon and Forbes  NCC General Secretary Michael Kinnamon and the Rev. Dr. James Forbes were opening speakers at the ecumenical peace conference here.

January 15, 2009, New York – Advice to Obama Two of the architects of "A Social Creed for the 21st Century" have recognized that the 44th President of the United States shares a common church tradition with them, and they have crafted a message promising "to help you achieve great deeds that will bring positive change for the people of America and the world." 

January 20, 2009, Philadelphia – Gun Protest An ecumenical peace conference concluded here Jan. 17 with a declaration of God’s vision of peace for the world, and direct action calling for an end to gun violence on the streets of Philadelphia.

January 20, 2009, Washington  – Congress protects land The newly convened 111th Congress moved quickly to protect millions of acres of God’s Creation, backed by messages from thousands of people of faith.

January 22, 2009, New York – Ecumenical Work Week  The National Council of Churches Special Commission for the Just Rebuilding of the Gulf Coast has scheduled the third annual Ecumenical Work Week in Gulfport and New Orleans this August 2-8.

January 27, 2009, Washington –  Fuel Guidelines The director of eco-justice programs for the National Council of Churches was in the White House Monday to watch President Obama sign an executive order to develop new fuel-efficiency guidelines for the auto industry.

January 27, 2009, Washington – Greener Camps The National Council of Churches Eco-Justice Program and the Committee on Outdoor Ministries are inviting camp and conference centers across the country to sign a Green Camp and Conference Center Covenant. 

January 27, 2009, Washington –  Cleanliness and Godliness Two National Council of Churches Eco-Justice resources, “Cleanliness and Godliness: A Gathering Guide for Green Cleaning” and the “Cleanliness and Godliness Toolkit,” are available as free downloads. 


February 5, 2009, Washington – SCHIP signing  Religious leaders watched in a spirit of celebration Wednesday as President Obama signed legislation to expand the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP).

February 16, 2009, New York – Sri Lanka Violence  As the government of Sri Lanka presses its advantage against the insurgent Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), U.S. religious leaders have expressed alarm that tens of thousands of innocent civilians are trapped in the cross fire.

February 23, 2009, New York – 2009 Yearbook The 77th annual edition of the Yearbook of American & Canadian Churches, long a highly regarded chronicler of growth and financial trends of religious institutions, records a slight but startling decline in membership of the nation's largest Christian communions.

February 23, 2009, New York – How do we count thee?  How many church members are there in the world? Well, no one knows, as your Sunday school teacher may already have told you. God is keeping track of the roll in the Lamb's book of life (see Revelation 21 for technical details), but those pages aren't open to demographers.

February 25, 2009, New York – Fat Tuesday New York's First African Methodist Episcopal Church: Bethel, observed a "Fat Tuesday" event with a combination of New Orleans style feasting, jazz, prayer, fellowship, and an offering to support the still-suffering residents of the hurricane-stricken Gulf Coast.

MARCH 2009

March 5, 2009, Shanghai – Officers in China The President and General Secretary of the National Council of Churches, in a historic first, have traveled to China to affirm with Chinese Christian leaders a mutual desire to engage in an "even deeper working relationship that allows us to consult regularly with one another and to speak and act together in response to contemporary issues."

March 5, 2009, New York – Plea for Immigration Reform  Forty-five days into the Obama Administration, the General Secretary of the National Council of Churches is asking for signs that the promised new day in immigrations policy is here.

March 5, 2009, New York – Condemn Sri Lanka violence  The General Secretary of the National Council of Churches has condemned the Tuesday morning attack on the Sri Lanka cricket team in Lahore, Pakistan.

March 11, 2009, Washington –  Limit climate change Thousands of Christians sent President Obama a letter today expressing their commitment to limiting the future impacts of climate change.

March 12, 2009, Washington – Justice staff appointed  In a joint appointment by the National Council of Churches and the United Church of Christ, an experienced attorney and minister has been named the NCC's Advocacy Officer with a focus on racial justice and human rights.

March 12, 2009, Washington – Advocacy Days  More than 700 Ecumenical Advocacy Days delegates are here this weekend to plan strategies to end global warming and enlist the support of congressional leaders.

March 14, 2009, Washington –  Advocacy Days Keynote The Rev. Janet Parker didn't have to remind more than 700 delegates to the annual Ecumenical Advocacy Days conference Saturday that projections of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) are scary, but she said fear is not the answer.

March 20, 2009, Washington –  No Child Left Behind  Nearly 100 faith leaders gathered here March 12 to discuss the reauthorization of the No Child Left Behind Act.  

March 23, 2009, Washington –  Mindful Living Guide The National Council of Churches' Eco-Justice Programs have released the Mindful Living Gathering Guide, a step-by-step process for facilitating adult Christian education on the issues of health, pollution and toxic substances.

March 25, 2009, New York –   Philippine Rights The National Council of Churches today urged Congress to require assurances that the Philippines is living up to human rights standards before providing its government with additional military financing.

March 26, 2009, Washington –   Protect Creation  Faith groups and individuals from around the country have sent messages to Congress this week, encouraging action to protect millions of acres of God’s Creation.

APRIL 2009

April 1, 2009, New York –   Protect Creation  POVERTY: A TIME FOR SHARING, an interfaith religion special, will be broadcast Sunday, April 26 on the CBS Television Network.

April 6, 2009, Washington – Chemberlin Named  The President Elect of the National Council of Churches and the head of one of the NCC's 35 member communions were named today to the President's Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.

April 7, 2009, New York –  NCC Easter Message The President and General Secretary of the National Council of Churches have issued an Easter message of hope in troubled times.

April 7, 2009, New York – NCC Pascha Special The National Council of Churches will present its Easter special, Pascha: The Resurrection of Christ, a program highlighting the Orthodox Christian observance of Easter, on ABC affiliates nationwide this month.

April 9, 2009, Washington – Green Bibles Given In honor of Earth Day, more than 50 free copies of The Green Bible are being sent to seminary professors and administrators by the National Council of Churches Eco-Justice Programs and the bible’s publisher, HarperOne.

April 20, 2009, Washington – King Abdullah Meeting Four U.S. religious leaders -- two Christian and two Muslim -- met with King Abdullah II of Jordan here to discuss specific topics about the Middle East. 

April 27, 2009, New York –  Dean Kelley Opus The First Amendment Center has made the Rev. Dean M. Kelley's once-abandoned five-volume The Law of Church and State in America available on line.

April 27, 2009, New York – Dean Kelley Bio The Rev. Dean M. Kelley, whose five-volume The Law of Church and State in America has been put online by the First Amendment Center, was one of the National Council of Churches' premier staff persons in First Amendment issues of church-state separation and religious liberty.

April 28, 2009, New York – Swine Flu As deaths attributed to the swine flu outbreak in Mexico passed 150, churches are posting links to helpful information for dealing with potential pandemics.

MAY 2009

May 14, 2009, New York – Armenian Genocide The U.S. government's reluctance to classify the 1915 massacre of 1.5 million Armenians as "genocide" leaves the matter festering in historical limbo, and the staff head of the National Council of Churches has urged the U.S. House of Representatives to set the matter straight.

May 18, 2009, Arlington, Va. – EPA Hearing Members of the faith community are stepping up and speaking out today at an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) public hearing to determine if greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide that are contributing to global climate change, are a threat to public health and welfare. 

May 21, 2009, Seattle – EPA Hearing Christians spoke out again today at an Environmental Protection Agency hearing in Seattle.

May 21, 2009, Elgin, Ill. – Governing Board The National Council of Churches Governing Board, meeting here in the national offices of the Church of the Brethren, approved a balanced budget for the 2009-2010 fiscal year and adopted a resolution on environmental health.

May 31, 2009, San Antonio, Tex. –  First Woman Chief The Rev. Lorraine K. Potter went from being the first woman to be ordained by American Baptists in Rhode Island to the first woman Chief of Air Force Chaplains.

JUNE 2009

June 3, 2009, New York – Tiller Murder NCC General Secretary Michael Kinnamon has condemned the murder of Dr. George Tiller as "a cruel, evil act."

June 4, 2009, New York – Praise Obama Address Senior staff of the National Council of Churches praised President Obama's address to the Muslim world today, and renewed the Council's commitment to friendship and dialogue with Muslim people of faith.

June 4, 2009, New York – Dispose of Nukes The general secretary of the National Council of Churches today affirmed President Obama's promise in Cairo "to seek a world in which no nations hold nuclear weapons."

June 9, 2009, Washington – Protect Against Climate Change  A church public policy advocate today urged a House committee to increase funding for international adaptation assistance in the recently introduced American Clean Energy and Security Act.  

June 12, 2009, New York – Bruno Kroker Bruno Kroker, 93, who fled his native Germany during the Third Reich and worked as a journalist in China before becoming a communicator for the NCC USA, the World Council of Churches and the United Presbyterian Church, died early Thursday.

June 11, 2009, Washington –Call for Torture Commission More than 150 religious leaders representing the National Religious Campaign Against Torture (NRCAT) gathered in front of the White House Thursday to urge the Obama Administration to form a commission of inquiry to investigate the government's past use of torture.

June 17, 2009, Washington – Health Care Reform Religious leaders from across the religious spectrum have joined in a strongly worded declaration that current economic conditions have made health care reform an urgent priority. 

June 17, 2009, Washington – Tobacco Regulation Faith leaders have applauded Congress for its action approving landmark legislation authorizing the Food and Drug Administration to regulate tobacco products

June 18, 2009, New York – Faith Forum The National Council of Churches' Faith and Order Commission is introducing an online "Faith Forum" to stimulate local ecumenical dialogue and bring Christians of various traditions closer together for conversations about their faith.

June 24, 2009, Havana, Cuba – Cuban Five The NCC General Secretary joined in solidarity with Latin American Christians meeting here last week, and called for justice for the "Cuban Five" who have been languishing in a Miami jail since 1998.

June 29, 2009, New York – Church Meetings  The General Secretary of the National Council of Churches has been on the road since June 11, attending church council and communion meetings in Havana, Pasadena, Grand Rapids and San Diego.

JULY 2009

July 7, 2009, Washington – Health Care Reform Religious leaders from across the religious spectrum have joined in a strongly worded declaration that current economic conditions have made health care reform an urgent priority. 

July 7, 2009, New York – Nuclear Arms Agreement Nearly 46 years after the United States and the Soviet Union signed the first limited nuclear test ban treaty, a new generation has agreed to continue the agonizingly slow process of reducing the number of nuclear weapons in the world.

July 7, 2009, New Orleans – Hurricane Prayers As a new hurricane season develops ominously, the NCC's Special Commission for the Just Rebuilding of the Gulf Coast has developed a "Seven Day Prayer Resource for the 2009 Hurricane Season."

July 8. 2009, Washington – ISNA Convention The NCC's Dr. Antonios Kireopoulos was among Christian, Jewish and political leaders to address the annual convention of the Islamic Society of North America.

July 15, 2009, New York – Climate Control  The NCC has praised a resolution by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) reaffirming its commitment to stem the effects of climate change while seeking new opportunities for communities of color.

July 15, 2009, New York – Beijing Interviews  Were you among the 30,000 who attended the 4th World Conference on Women in Beijing in 1995? The NCC wants to hear from you.

July 15, 2009, Cleveland, Ohio – Betty Broadband Leading off its "Bring Betty Broadband" campaign to promote equal high-speed-internet access for all, a diverse gathering of religious groups has launched “So We Might See,” a national interfaith coalition for media justice.

July 27, 2009, New York – Congo Rapes  WCC feature reports churches worldwide are supporting victims of rape in Democratic Republic of Congo.

July 28, 2009, Washington – Kireopoulos  The NCC's Dr. Antonios Kireopoulos has been elected chair of the Save Darfur Coalition.


August 3, 2009, Washington – Mountaintop mining People of faith speak out against mountaintop removal mining.


August 5, 2009, Chicago – Eck to address RCC2010 Diana Eck, director and founder of Harvard's Pluralism Project, will address Religion Communication Congress 2010 here in April.


August 12, 2009, New York – William Schmidt Ecumenical historian and biographer William J. Schmidt dies.

August 12, 2009, New York  ̶  Robert Campbell The Rev. Dr. Robert C. Campbell, 85, the longest serving general secretary in American Baptist history, died July 27. 

August 24, 2009, New York – ELCA-UMC The General Secretary of the National Council of Churches has welcomed the decision of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) to enter into full communion with the United Methodist Church. 

August 26, 2009, New York – Edwin Tuller The Rev. Dr. Edwin Tuller, who presided over American Baptist Churches during the turbulent sixties and was a unyielding advocate for human rights and peace, died yesterday in Pittsburgh.

August 27, 2009, Geneva – New WCC leader Norwegian theologian and pastor Rev. Dr. Olav Fykse Tveit, 48, was elected 7th general secretary of the World Council of Churches (WCC) today during its Central Committee meeting.  

August 31, 2009, New York –  Prayer of the Environment  On the 20th anniversary of the Orthodox Prayer of the Environment, National Council of Churches General Secretary Michael Kinnamon urged people of faith to keep praying.


September 8, 2009, New York – Bishop Malik The Episcopal Bishop of Lahore, Pakistan, says tensions continue in relations between Christians and Muslims.

September 10, 2009, New York – CBS Special "Religion, Politics & Advocacy,” a half-hour television documentary produced by CBS in collaboration with the Interfaith Broadcasting Commission, will be aired nationwide on local CBS affiliates on Sunday, Sept. 27, in most areas.

September 15, 2009, New York – Carbon Footprints Two congregations have made significant strides in reducing their "carbon footprint" -- their energy consumption -- and each have been awarded twenty copies of the Green Bible by the National Council of Churches Eco-Justice program.

September 15, 2009, New York – Fistula  Women’s Ministries at the National Council of Churches has announced a pilot program for young women exploring the connections between faith and action, through the lens of obstetric fistula, a birth injury affecting more than 2 million women worldwide.

September 16, 2009, Louisville, Ky. – Lew Mudge The Rev. Dr. Lewis S. Mudge, a scholar and theologian whose breadth of interests and expertise enriched virtually every corner of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and the global ecumenical movement, died September 11 in his sleep at his home in Berkeley, Calif.

September 21, 2009, New York  ̶  DeWinter The Rev. Deborah DeWinter has been named Donor Relations Director of the National Council of Churches.

September 22, 2009, New York – No Nukes The National Council of Churches, which has been relatively silent about nuclear disarmament since the end of the Cold War, has firmly renewed its opposition to proliferation with a ringing resolution.

September 22, 2009, New York – Mid East Peace The National Council of Churches, along with Churches for Middle East Peace (CMEP) and other individuals and groups, has supported unilateral commitments being urged upon Israeli, Palestinian and Arab leaders to rekindle the peace process in the Middle East.

September 24, 2009, New York  – All About God  A member of the NCC Interfaith Relations Commission -- a convert from Islam to Christianity -- has written a book, It's All About God, to describe his encounter with God that he believes transcends all faith traditions.

September 25, 2009, New York – Civil Discourse  Alarmed by the intensity of angry and sometimes violent language coming out of public meetings on healthcare and other issues, the National Council of Churches Governing Board has called for "civility in public discourse."


October 1, 2009, New York – Serene Jones Emerging media will have a dramatic and disorienting effect on the church every bit as profound as the impact of the printing press in the 15th century, President Serene Jones of Union Theological Seminary told the National Council of Churches Communications Commission this week.

October 2, 2009, New York – Parker Lecture Michael Kinnamon, addressing the 27th annual Everett C. Parker Ethics in Telecommunications Lecture at Riverside Church, said this week that ecumenical and media leaders share a "common cause" to "promote a genuine sense of community" in today's fragmented society.

October 13, 2009, Washington – Green Jobs Citing a shared tradition of justice and compassion, the faith community, no stranger to providing personal and communal assistance to the nation’s most vulnerable populations, is organizing across the country to call on government officials to create new, sustainable and green job opportunities for persons living in poverty.

October 13, 2009, New York – Margaret Flory Margaret Flory, a visionary Presbyterian leader who created a number of seminal programs that connected Christians around the world with each other, died Oct. 1 in Asheville, N.C. She was 95.

October 14, 2009 – Mitch Albom  The National Council of Churches has partnered with Mitch Albom to produce a discussion guide for his latest bestseller.  

October 15, 2009, New York – H1N1 The National Council of Churches Health Task Force has issued flu prevention guidelines for congregations that includes both standard hygiene activities and unusual worship practices.

October 15, 2009, Geneva – Emilio Castro Honored  The Rev. Dr. Emilio Castro, World Council of Churches General Secretary from 1985 to 1992, was decorated Wednesday by the government of Chile for his defense of human rights in Chile during the brutal dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet. 

October 16, 2009 – Media Fast Religious groups will fast from violent media October 19-26.

October 16, 2009, New York – Gulf Priority Religious leaders urge Obama to make Gulf coast recovery a priority.

October 27, 2009, Washington – Healthy Spa NCC releases a 'Healthy Spa" tool kit in commemoration of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.


November 2, 2009, New York – Nuclear Disarmament NATO leaders get the support of international, regional and national ecumenical organizations to pursue nuclear disarmament.

November 5, 2009, Washington – Climate Justice With the United Nations climate change negotiations only five weeks away, more than 14,000 signatures were delivered to President Obama and Congress today calling for an effective and moral response to the emerging climate crisis.  

November 5, 2009, Minneapolis – General Assembly The annual General Assembly of the National Council of Churches USA  and Church World Service will meet here November 10-12 in a spirit of New Testament optimism and a celebration of the 35 diverse communions that come together to form the ecumenical bodies.

November 7, 2009, Minneapolis – New Fire Forty young adults from 17 communions, 15 states, the District of Columbia, the Philippines and Canada, have gathered here this week-end with an ambitious aim: to launch a nation-wide movement of young adults for Christ.

November 9, 2009, Minneapolis – New Fire 2 On the second day of the ecumenical young adult gathering New Fire 2009, nearly 40 young adult participants from across the country attended Sunday worship at the Church of All Nations, a multi-cultural Presbyterian Church (USA) congregation in Minneapolis.

November 9, 2009, Minneapolis – Chemberlin The Rev. Peg Chemberlin, executive director of the Minnesota Council of Churches, will be installed as President of the National Council of Churches at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, November 12, in a public service at St. Mark's Episcopal Cathedral here.

November 10, 2009, Minneapolis --NCC President Elect Kathryn M. Lohre, assistant director of the Pluralism Project at Harvard University and an Evangelical Lutheran Church in America representative to the World Council of Churches Central Committee, has been elected the President Elect of the National Council of Churches by the NCC Governing Board.

November 11, 2009, Minneapolis – Margaret Aymer The wisdom of the Bible defies the world's wisdom, Margaret Aymer tells 2009 General Assembly.

November 11, 2009, Minneapolis – GA 2009 opens General Assembly opens with a sober assessment of world and national conditions and a call for a united response.

November 11, 2009, Minneapolis – New Fire 3 New Fire Movement dreams dreams but makes concrete plans.

November 16, 2009, Minneapolis – GA wrap The General Assembly of the National Council of Churches and Church World Service, celebrating the biblical call to rejoice, pray and give thanks, also called upon churches and governments to take additional steps toward worldwide justice and peace.

November 25, 2009, New York – Circles of Names Mindful of the historic contributions of women leaders in its member communions and concerned about recent cutbacks in gender justice and women's ministries, the National Council of Churches is taking steps to nurture the work.


December 6, 2009, New York – Cuban 5 The President and General Secretary of the National Council of Churches have endorsed and forwarded  to President Obama a message from 37 Cuban church leaders asking for a review of the case of the "Cuban Five," and for the granting of visas so the Cuban prisoners held in the U.S. can be visited by their families.

December 18, 2009, New York – Copenhagen The National Council of Churches today announced its support for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s declaration at the climate summit in Copenhagen that the United States will protect persons living in poverty around the world from the impacts of climate change.

NCC News Service Index