The Ecumenical Youth Council in Europe (EYCE) has member organisations in 26 countries throughout Europe. Members include national ecumenical youth councils, denominational youth councils/bodies and those representing Church youth in Europe.
According to the preamble of EYCE’s Constitution all member organisations must accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour in accordance with the Scriptures, and therefore seek to fulfil together their common calling to serve both Him and humankind to the glory of the one God, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.
Irrespective of differences in their backgrounds, Members share a common task: ‘to initiate and further the common commitment of young people to Jesus Christ and His desire for reconciliation, justice and a lasting peace in Europe and the world’ (Constitution 2.1).
The Ecumenical Youth Council in Austria was founded in 1958 and currently unites Old-Catholic, Lutheran, Reformed, United Methodist, Roman Catholic, and Baptist Youth Organizations.
The purpose of the Council is to enable Christian Children- and Youth Organizations as well as representatives from other Christian Denominations that do Children and Youth Work to be ecumenically active.
Core Points of the work are the World Day of Prayer for Children as well as the annual Ecumenical Stations of the Cross in Vienna that the Council supports. The Council also offers sponsoring for Ecumenical events and publishes “Bible-Clicks” on its homepage.
The Service Protestant de la Jeunesse (SPJ) is a non profit-making organisation working in the youth sector. We organise camps and different training courses for young people and have been active in the area of long-term volunteering since 1981. Within the structure of the “Diaconal Year” programme and the EVS, the SPJ hosts each year around 15 young people between 18 and 30 years old, without discrimination (national, religious, political, racial, gender…). These young people, who come mainly from countries situated within the European Union, volunteer for between 10 and 12 months in various institutions based on social care. As a “Contact Point”, or coordinating organisation, for these volunteers (EVS and non EVS) and persons doing their civil service, we organise intercultural training, give them support, etc. The SPJ is also a sending organisation for Belgian volunteers who want to go abroad.
The Service Protestant de la Jeunesse is the Youth Commission of the United Protestant Church in Belgium (EPUB). We organise seminars and conferences, subsidised by the French-speaking government of Belgium, for young people who come from various social, religious and cultural backgrounds. This training organised by our association enables young people to become “youth workers” for youth camps, school holiday clubs, scouts, etc. At the end of the training sessions, the young people get a certificate which is recognised by the French-speaking government of Belgium.
The SPJ also organises camps in and outside Belgium and themed weekends (for instance, to obtain the European First Aid Certificate).
The SPJ is a member of : the Relie-F (member of the Youth Council for the French-speaking Community in Belgium), Ecumenical Youth Council in Europe (EYCE), the Association of Voluntary Service Organisations (AVSO) and the Ecumenical Diaconal Year Network (EDYN).
ECC is an association of churches confessing their faith in Our Lord Jesus Christ as their God and Saviour, and aspiring to realize their mission together, to the Glory of God the Father and Son and the Holy Spirit.
The ECC is not a supra-church. Each of the churches decides individually on the questions of their learning, confession, life and ruling, as well as on their relation to the other churches and church unions. A membership in the ECC, however, binds individual churches to an ecumenical relationship to all other churches of the ECC. It engages them also to seek a maximum possible degree of agreement in all controversial issues.
ØkumeniskUngdom(ØU) is an ecumenical network organization consisting of a number of youth organizations and some individual members working for renewal of the church across denominational borders. ØU is a member of World Student Christian Federation (WSCF) and Ecumenical Youth Council of Europe (EYCE), where it represents Denmark. ØU also participates in Scandinavian and Baltic co-operation. Each year ØU has a thematic focus. Last year it was: “No Ecumenism = No church”. This year it is “This is my body – about faith and sexuality”.
ØU has more than 300 members under 30 years, and the head office is located in The Ecumenical Centre in Aarhus. ØU publishes a magazine called ANNO once a year and offers many different activities throughout the year such as international travels, prayer meetings, ecumenical services, dialogue groups, and seminars.
Finland: Suomen Ekumeenisen Neuvoston Nuorisojaosto (The Finnish Ecumenical Council’s Youth Commission)
Background information: The Committee of Youth is one of the seven Committees within the Finnish Ecumenical Council, founded in 1917, and the Committee has been active since the 1970’s.
The Committee of Youth promotes ecumenical youth work in association with other Christian fellowships and offers young people opportunities to take part in ecumenism on a national and international level. The Committee members represent 17 different Christian churches and associations in Finland and convene approximately 8 times annually. Meetings are attended by representatives of member churches, the President of the Committee along with secretaries of different fields.
The Committee organized the Education Program for International and Ecumenical Affairs in co-operation with other associations again in the fall of 2007 and 2008. The program is a registered trademark and has been taking place every fall for over 20 years. The team on behalf of the Committee consisted of the program coordinator, Secretary of Education, two assisting secretaries and helpful volunteers from a variety of Christian churches and associations. The program was organized in Joensuu and Helsinki in different Christian churches and organizations. Guest speakers were invited to address the participants and different services were attended as part of the program that was divided into four weekends over a period of one semester. Approximately 24 to 27 young people in total per year take part in the course.
The program aims to educate young people to act in ecumenism, introduce them with useful knowledge of different denominations and provide an opportunity to take part in worship with Christians from different denominational backgrounds. As of 2008 the Committee has been planning a training course on ecumenical affairs and ecumenical youth work for church employees, which most likely will be implemented in 2010 for the first time among church youth workers.
The Committee encourages young people to take part in international ecumenical meetings and study sessions and grants financial assistance for domestic and foreign trips, registration fees and other expenses. The Secretary of International Affairs informs people of ecumenical training courses organized by EYCE and other ecumenical functions. In 2008 the Committee endorsed applications and granted funds for people who attended EYCE study sessions, the European Fellowship Easter Course in Copenhagen, the World Student Federation general meeting in Canada and the EYCE meeting for National Contacts in Italy.
As of 2006 the Committee has taken part in religious dialogue among young people and continues to develop different forms of active participation in that field. The Committee has two designated secretaries working for the religious dialogue of young people. The Committee promoted ecumenical activity and distributed information on ecumenism at two different three-day meetings organized by the Finnish Evangelical Lutheran Church in 2008 and took part in an ecumenical advent celebration in December. The Committee’s spirituality project intends to publish prayer and worship music material when all the details have been finalized. Recently EYCE National Contact persons from Nordic and Baltic countries have been co-operating in promoting ecumenical activity and networking in the Nordic-Baltic area and are planning a meeting in Riga at the end of May 2009.
France: Fédération Protestante de France – Commission Jeunesse (Youth commission of the French protestant federation)
Founded in 1905 the French Protestant Federation France is reuniting more than 30 ChurchUnions, more than 80 associations, is representing around 500 communities, institutions and movements for a common witness.
For this aims a youth commission has been created in order to reach young people.
This Youth commission of the French protestant church gathers several members (Lutherans, Reformed, evangelical, Baptist, ..) from all over France several times a years to discuss and work on different projects. It’s a place where members can promote their activities, ask for support or can work on different thematic and projects.
Germany: Arbeitsgemeinschaft der Evangelischen Jugend in Deutschland (Federation of Protestant Youth in Germany)
The Federation of Protestant Youth in Germany (aej) is an association of groups concerned with youth work in Germany representing its thirty-five member organisations and eight protestant or ecumenical associated member organisations at the federal level for representing the intetests of about 1,2 million young people.
Youth Link exists to provide support and training for youth workers and community relations experiences for young people.www.youthlink.org.uk
Who we are
FGEI was founded in 1969 as a result of the wish of Waldensian, Methodist and Baptist youth movements to get together in a common interdenominational federation.
Nowadays FGEI is a network which keeps youth groups from Baptist, Methodist and Waldensian congregations (BMW) in touch with one another. Its members acknowledge their faith in Jesus Christ through their commitment in everyday life, their own personal experience and the joy of meeting up. Whoever may wish to share one’s questions, doubts or hopes would be welcome.
Youth of FGEI often organize local and national meetings and training camps. They also discuss the present political situation and reflect upon the motives of the members of the community by participating in the activities of the Church in many different aspects.
What we do
Reflections on faith and politics are the main features of the federation’s activities. Nowadays, witnessing Jesus Christ’s teachings from one person’s experience and questioning on the gospel, even when the Gospel itself is not fashionable, require close attention to other people’s lives and a deep reflection on the reality which we are living in.
Youth’s commitment in their communities and the urge for reporting the contemporary importance of the evangelical experience, lead FGEI to propose new liturgical experiments and to carry on looking into contemporary theology. Once every two years and a half the “Congresso” (General meeting) plans the Federation’s activities, discuss various topics, defines the national situation. Friends get together and guests are greeted while work is in progress.
The Congresso votes the members of the “Consiglio” (Executive Committee). During its mandate, the Consiglio, together with local groups, will coordinate the usual activities of the Federation, will support relationships between youth groups, BMW churches and other national or international institutions and will carry on the decisions of the Congress organising particular events.
Consiglio‘s visits to other youth groups and communities are also important activities as regards the introduction of FGEI to other people and the creation of new contacts.
Some important moments of the Federation are the “Campo Studi” (a national seminar for youth formation) and the “Campi formazione” (three training seminars, organised in the north, centre and south districts), as well as the several events that can be organised by the local groups.
FGEI main income is basically provided by self funding and by Italian Churches donations. FGEI’s cash money is mainly used for funding inter-regional and national camps, journeys and various projects.
FGEI’s information and debate instruments are “Notiziario FGEI” (a special insert of the Italian Protestant Weekly Journal Riforma), “Gioventù Evangelica” (the federation magazine) which normally deals with Bible studies, readers’ comments, debates and discussions, and the website www.fgei.org, of course an important opportunity for the Federation’s members to join new contacts and to share reflections, resources, experiences.
Relationship with Foreign Institutions
FGEI is member of EYCE, WSCF and is in contact with EBF and EMYC.
In these years relationships with foreign ecumenical organizations are going on with the participation in training courses and seminars as participants or IPC, or hosting some events in Italy.
In the 2006, five members or friends of the Federation could take part at EYCE seminars. The experiences evaluations were very positive and put into practise trough articles on the Federation’s communication instruments or the national protestant journal, visits to young local groups and churches, or personal engagement on the topics with local actions.
The Christian Youth Association “KRISTA” is a non-profit youth organisation based in Latvia. Members of KRISTA are students from different universities and highschools in Riga and Latvia belonging to different churches and are involved in youth work. The main activities of KRISTA on a local level include different activities for youth such as training events of highschool youth leaders and organising discussion groups on issues important for youth.
Members of KRISTA have been involved in international events as well, both as participants and organisers. One of KRISTA’s recent successful events to be mentioned is a Latvian – Polish – Belarusian – Ukrainian youth exchange in summer 2004 and its continuation projects in 2005 – 2008 as well as a youth leader training in 2006. According to the constitution of KRISTA the aims of the organisation are bringing forth the values of culture of Latvia as well as spreading common Christian values in contemporary society. The most important objective for reaching those goals is showing that young people coming from different social, cultural and religious backgrounds can work together successfully and make a difference.
There has been good cooperation between KRISTA and „Olde Vechte” foundation in the Netherlands as well as with EYCE (Ecumenical Youth Council in Europe) in sending participants to their events regularly and with the Lutheran Church of Poland in organising a youth exchange together, as well as with other organisations all across the Europe.
Lithunia: Lietuvos evangeliku liuteronu jaunimo centras (Youth Centre of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Lithuania)
The Youth Centre of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Lithuania is a public non-profit voluntary organization, which brings together the Evangelical Lutheran youth living in Lithuania and seeks to coordinate education and activities of the youth of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Lithuania.
Founder of the Youth Centre of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Lithuania is the meeting of delegates from all youth groups of parishes of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Lithuania. The constituent assembly was held in August 1992, in Klaipėda. The constituent assembly has adopted the first Regulations of the Organization; it has elected the Board and the Auditing Commission of the Youth Centre.
The Youth Centre of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Lithuania organizes youth camps, training courses, workshops, seminars, youth meetings of different parishes and it also promotes youth music activities, Bible studies, etc. The activities of the Youth Centre of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Lithuania are open to young people of all denominations. The Youth Centre is in a close cooperation with Christian youth organizations in Lithuania and with other youth organizations abroad.
In 2011 the Youth Council was started as a part of the Christian Council of Norway. It is organized as an annual ecumenical conference, where youth leaders from a wide span of Christian denominations and organizations meet, discuss, learn and get to know eachother. The conference elect members to represent youth at the general assembly of the Christian Council of Norway.“
Romania: Evangelische Kirche A.B. in Rumänien – Jugend (Evangelical Church of the Augsburg Confession in Romania – Youth)
What is the meaning of the Saint Stelian Association, we, who have been toiling here for such a long time, ask ourselves? It is not easy, believe us, to summarize in a few words the essence to touch your soul.
The Saint Stelian Association is more than a workplace, more than a place where the suffering people come for help, and for certain, much more than an experienced organization.
The Saint Stelian Association is a beautiful and clean way of life, which is based on the foundation of belief in God, not as a fashionable template, but as a principle on which all our decisions are based.
Thus, although almost 20 years of a trial filled transition have passed, we are here since 1993, learning to be useful where there is suffering and need.
How did you survive for so long? – many ask. It’s a question that challenges us to introspection.
How is it that the Saint Stelian Association has not only been constantly active inside the civil society, but has also continuously developed so today it can run projects that cover a large number of beneficiaries from all disadvantaged categories of the society?
Our answer to this question is the invitation to read our webpage like a success story. You will understand deep things, you will find the inspiration and impulse to give to others, you will enjoy genuine fragments of soul.
Have an useful journey!
Russia: Evro-Aziatskaja Federacija Sojuzov Evangelicheskikh Khristian Baptistov (Euro-Asiatic Federation of the Unions of the Evangelical Christians-Baptists)
Russia: Moskovsky Patriarkhat – Otdel Vneshnikh Tserkovnykh Snosheheny (Moscow Patriarchate – Department of External Church Relations)
Slovakia: Ekumenická rada cirkví v Slovenskej republike (Ecumenical Council of Churches in Slovakia)
The Ecumenical Council of Churches in Slovakia (ECCSR) is an association of Christian churches registered in the Slovak Republic. It has 12 members (see www.ekumena.sk/Clenovia/clenovia.htm). Its basic mission is:
- to overcome differences and strengthen unity among churches;
- to improve their mutual cooperation; to support democracy in countries;
- to assist people in need.
- promoting projects and programs of ECCSR member churches in the area of their own activities; development and humanitarian cooperation;
- providing educational program for members
Programs and working groups of ECCSR
Volunteer Service Program DOBRO – activities of the program, which was established in 2004 are focusing on exchanging of volunteers. ECCSR is a member of Ecumenical Diaconal Year Network /EDYN/ and with its established partners, other members of EDYN cooperating closely in hosting and sending a long term voluntary service volunteers.
Study Centre for New Religiosity and Sects (CSS) – the main tasks are: to monitor teachings and practices of individual religious groups and sects; to build up the archive of the specialized literature archive, video and audio-documents; to organize specialized lectures, discussions, seminars and conferences; to inform public by means of publishing the professional articles in periodical ROZMER and web site www.sekty.sk; to cooperate with home and foreign centres, editorial offices.
Working committees (social, youth, women) – Besides a regular gathering for worship services and bible studies churches are working also in certain practical areas. ECCSR created some working committees were is an open space for an exchange of experience and development of a work on common projects. Almost every member has its representatives in the committees.
ECCSR is a member of: Ecumenical Diaconal Year Network (EDYN); World Council of Churches (WCC); CCME, Conference of European Churches (CEC); Eurodiaconia, Ecumenical Youth Council in Europe (EYCE); Ecumenical Forum of European Christian Women (EFECW). ECCSR is partner in Roma Gadje Dialog through Service (RGDTS), ECCSR cooperates with these organisations and is working on common projects.
Switzerland: Oekumenischer Jugenddienst Schweiz/Service Oecuménique de Jeunesse en Suisse (Ecumenical Youth Service in Switzerland)
International member organisation: Association of the International Christian Youth Exchange in Europe
EMYC is a group of young people, youth leaders and people responsible for work with young people in Methodist churches across Europe, who work together to share ideas and resources; encourage, support and pray with each other; and network to encourage young people to develop international links during their journies of faith.EMYC Council meets every year at the end of September to bring together young people, youth workers, children’s workers and senior decision makers from the Methodist churches across Europe, as well as invited guests from other international bodies, to network, form friendships, discuss pertinent issues and potential co-operative work and to support each other in fellowship and prayer. The meeting itself has changed over the years to meet the changing needs of the churches – from its early form as a week-long formal meeting dedicated to organising EMYC-run projects to its current form as an informal 3-day meeting structured around conversations and co-operation beyond EMYC.
Work with young people has been at the core of EMYC since its inception in 1975, and has adapted over the years to meet the needs of the Methodist church in Europe. Currently, EMYC focuses on two things: enabling young people from across Europe to attend events held by EMYC member countries, and networking youth workers across Europe for mutual support and strengthening.
Events such as youth camps and locally-organised festivals are made open to young people from across Europe; in previous years, EMYC members have worked with organising teams to help ensure that preparations were made for international visitors.
Those who attend EMYC Council meetings find that the friendships that they forge naturally lead to opportunities for exciting work together, for conversations with people who understand and who can offer support and their own unique insights into work with young people.