Diakonia & Capacity Building Workshop

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The Middle East Council of Churches and the World Council of Churches recently hosted 47 representatives from member churches and related organisations at Notre Dame du Puit outside of Beirut, Lebanon for a week-long workshop on strategic planning for Diakonia programs and efforts.

The event, held 28 November – 2 December, 2016, was grounded in the shared Christian theology of Diakonia — or the expression of faith through service to others in need. The training on strategic planning and international standards of accountability served to build capacity in regional churches and Christian organisations in order to help them rise to meet the rapidly growing needs of their communities. During a time of conflict and instability across the Middle East, where churches are taking on increased roles in their communities, many attendees cited the usefulness of learning such tools.

The workshop was the second in a series of events around Diakonia designed as capacity building opportunities for ecumenical advancement of church organisations in the region. The first event took place in June, 2016 in Beirut and explored the history and theology of Diakonia, as well as ways in which participants might enact or expand Diakonia in their communities.