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'Protestant Pope' to visit Australia

World Council of Churches (WCC) General Secretary Rev Dr Sam Kobia arrives in Australia tomorrow to take part in the national forum of the National Council of Churches in Australia (NCCA) in Adelaide.

The Catholic Church is a full member of the NCCA, while it remains an observer at the WCC.

Because of the significance of his position, the General Secretary has been dubbed "the Protestant Pope". The WCC is the church equivalent of the United Nations.

Dr Kobia leads the peak body representing millions of Christians who belong to most of the world's churches.

After his arrival tomorrow, Dr Kobia will fly immediately to Port Augusta, where traditional owners at the old Umeewarra Mission at Davenport will welcome him to Australia.

He will then lunch with Aboriginal elders and spend the late afternoon and evening with Aboriginal people before spending the afternoon at Baxter Detention Facility.

"Dr Kobia is very much looking forward to meeting Aboriginal people and asylum seekers who are being held in detention," said NCCA president, Rev. Professor James Haire. "It's really fitting that he will be welcomed to country by traditional owners of the land and Indigenous leaders at Port Augusta.

While at Port Augusta Dr Kobia will take part in the two services and meet detainees at Baxter Detention Centre and will make a short visit to Pika Wiya Health Service, an Aboriginal health service started with $30,000 seed funding from the WCC.

'Protestant Pope' to visit Australia (Insights 6/7/04)

National Council of Churches of Australia | At the cross roads: Living in a changing world, Lincoln College North Adelaide South Australia 9-13 July 2004 (National Council of Churches of Australia)
World Council of Churches

7 Jul 2004