WCC nominates Korean and Norwegian for top post: General secretary post becomes vacant January 1

The World Council of Churches has identified two candidates—one a Korean Presbyterian and the other a Norwegian Lutheran—for the post of general secretary, which becomes vacant on January 1.

The candidates, both ordained ministers, are Seong-won Park, a professor of theology at Youngnam Theological University and Seminary in Kyeongsan, South Korea, and Olav Fykse Tveit, the general secretary of the Church of Norway Council on Ecumenical and International Relations.

The new general secretary will be elected in Geneva during a meeting from August 26 to September 2 of the WCC’s central committee, its main governing body.

The announcement June 26 by the Geneva-based WCC was unusual. The council does not customarily publicly release the names of the final two candidates for the post of general secretary.

The current WCC general secretary, Samuel Kobia, a Kenyan Methodist, had said in 2008 that he would not seek a second term, and after his tenure was temporarily extended, the WCC said that he would leave the post at the end of 2009. –ENI