Introduction to the Dortmund KirchentagDigitisation, work, social participation and Europe are the chief thematic focal points of the 37th Kirchentag (19th-23rd June, 2019 in Dortmund). At a recent meeting in Schwerte around 50 projects and themes were discussed around the slogan "What kind of faith (or confidence)?" (2 Kings 18:19). From summer 2018 volunteer programme committees will be planning 2000 events.
The Kirchentag's General Secretary Julia Helmke comments:
"It's about the centre of society that is eroding. We're looking at anxiety about poverty, uncertainty about the future and loss of language interacting with one another. Faith in the great civic institutions is shaken. How do we deal with that, what can we set against it? What does faith in God mean in this context?... Kirchentag illustrates instead variety and diversity, as well as special target-group interests. We want to create even stronger net-working, Cross-Over and new thematic connections for Dortmund in 2019."
The thematic areas of Migration, Integration and social participation will run like a scarlet thread through the Kirchentag and its preparation. The great international challenges of peace- and development policy will be among the topics dealt with in an International Peace Centre - an opportunity to contribute for non-European guests of the Kirchentag. And in a city like Dortmund Sport will of course be a theme: How religiously is Fan-culture loaded? What ethical challenges result from the performance principle and the financial aspects around Sport?
In addition to these points of focus there will be the usual rich variaty of Centres, Programmed Days and Themes, with which Kirchentags have been dealing for many years. They include Bible and liturgy, accessibility and gender issues, city and environment, not to mention interfaith dialogue. An important role - particularly in view of the third Ecumenical Kirchentag to be held in Frankfurt am Main in 2021 - will be played by the themes Eucumenism and Eucharist. More information, including comment from the Kirchentag President Hans Leyendecker can be found at https://www.kirchentag.de/service/meldungen/dortmund/maerz_2018/kirchentag_der_klaren_worte.html"