Anglicans and Lutherans in Canada and the United States are joining in responding to the Arusha Call.
The Arusha Call was given to all 319 members of the World Council of Churches (WCC) at a gathering in Arusha, Tanzania, in March 2018. The Call looks at current practices and understandings of Christian mission around the globe. Over 1,000 participants from a wide variety of Christian and cultural traditions were involved in gathering the report.
The findings were compiled in a summary statement called the Arusha Call to Discipleship.
Together, the Episcopal Church, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada, and the Anglican Church of Canada, are calling on their members to use the Call "as our four churches commit anew to engage together the challenges and opportunities of faithful mission in our fast-changing contexts."
The four churches said in a release that "We welcome this witness from Christians around the world. The Call is a document of realism and of joy, of honest assessment and of hope for transformation, of trust in the way of Christ and in the power of the Spirit."
The churches say that "Especially, we lift up these features of the Call, which gives voice to many of the same convictions increasingly emphasized in our four churches:
- It identifies deepening the discipleship of Christians as the primary missional and evangelical concern, knowing that the Gospel truly lived is the best form of witness to it.
- It defines mission in a manner that seeks to move away from colonialist perspectives, understanding that it is not the work of the Church directed ‘to the margins’ but God’s work originating ‘from the margins’.
- It insists that all mission and evangelism must be integrated and holistic, not endorsing any false dichotomy between a spiritual salvation and the transformation of social, economic, racial, environmental, and gender injustices.
- It understands that as the Church is called into ‘active collaboration’ in God’s mission, this responsibility rests not only with those who serve in offices of leadership in the Church; it relies on a renewal of the vocations and ministry of all the baptized.
"We thus commend the Arusha Call to Discipleship to our four churches as we expand and deepen the relationships of full communion among us. May our growth in unity also lead us to a ‘personal and communal conversion, and a transforming discipleship’, for sake of God’s mission in the world."