45th General Meeting took place in Wrocław, Poland

The Ecumenical Youth Council in Europe held its 45th General Meeting in Wrocław, Poland from 24th to 27th August 2023. As the General Meeting usually takes place every two years, the agenda had important matters to ensure EYCE’s operations. These included the accounts, budget for the next two years, and the election of the new Executive Committee. The delegates carried out all their tasks and we are pleased to announce the election of the new Executive Committee members:

Aino Vihonen, a young theologian from Finland, was elected as Chair of the ExCo.
She receives backing from Steven Edwards, a United Protestant from Germany, who has been chair for the past two years and has decided to run for the position of vice-chair, and from Harald Skoglund Dahler, a Lutheran from Norway, who has been elected treasurer, continuing the role he took over at the beginning of 2023 when Hannah Weber resigned.
Two members without portfolio round out the team. Aida Hanifi is a Finnish kindergarten teacher and Orthodox Christian who joined the ExCo in September 2021. Saara Alamäki, also from Finland, is a first-time ExCo member and Lutheran.

We were pleased to welcome as guests Maria Mountraki, newly elected member of the Governing Board of the Conference of European Churches, and Grzegorz Giemza, Director of the Polish Ecumenical Council, which invited EYCE to hold its 45th General Meeting in Wrocław, Poland. We are grateful to both individuals for their time in discussing with our delegates and ExCo members the demands of young Christians in Europe and their critical role in ecumenical organisations.

In addition to regular matters, the delegates also discussed a strategic plan for EYCE and provided input for the ExCo to link the work of EYCE in the coming years to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Another crucial topic was EYCE’s current proposal for a project named “re:start EYCE” that requires financial assistance and startup resources to obtain a stable structure.  The new Executive Committee has a lot of work to do, but they are eager to move EYCE forward in the next two years.

The former Chair, Steven Edwards, thanked all the outgoing ExCo members for their support and strong commitment which enabled EYCE to continue to engage young Christians in youth organisations, but also in other bodies such as the Conference of European Churches, the World Council of Churches or the European Christian Environmental Network, to discuss issues of concern to them and to bring about change in the church and wider society. They spent a significant amount of time discussing opportunities and creating a sustainable structure for EYCE, which now serves as the foundation for the upcoming term. Gratitude is extended to Spyridoula Fotinis, Inga Stoveland Dekko and Anne Heikkinen.