Magazine article The Christian Century

People

Magazine article The Christian Century

People

Article excerpt

* Two religious leaders played decisive roles recently in bringing labor peace to Los Angeles. Jesse Jackson, a last-minute mediator in a month-long bus strike, shuttled between transit authorities and union leaders at 6 A.M. October 17 after 24 straight hours of negotiations seemed hopeless. Pleading that "we are too close to stop," Jackson was able to end the third longest transit strike in Los Angeles history. The week before, Cardinal Roger Mahony of Los Angeles pleaded successfully for county workers to end their one-day-old strike. As the bus strike ended, Mahony urged transit leaders to expand bus routes used by the working poor and work with federal and state lawmakers to retire the agency's enormous debt--a proposal quickly endorsed by Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan, a close friend of Mahony.

* The retiring dean of Yale University Divinity School has been named president of the United Board for Christian Education in Asia. Richard J. Wood, who has led the divinity school since 1996, announced in January that he planned to retire at the end of this year. The 63-year-old Methodist and Quaker minister will now help oversee theological education in Asia. As president of the United Board, Wood will work with 80 colleges in Cambodia, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Myanmar, the Philippines, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam. The board, which says it does not evangelize, works to encourage a Christian presence at Christian and secular universities and is supported by nine U.S. denominations.

* Kim Dae-jung, the 76-year-old-president of South Korea, was congratulated on winning the Nobel Peace Prize by Konrad Raiser, general secretary of the World Council of Churches, who recalled the once-imprisoned Korean leader's long struggle for democratization and unification of the Korean peninsula. In 1980-81, "along with you many Christians and church leaders underwent imprisonment and torture for raising their voice against injustice," Raiser wrote October 16. At their meeting in April 1999--before North Korean leaders responded this year to Kim's unification overtures--Raiser said, "I was impressed by your readiness to set aside serious ideological and political concerns in the pursuit of peace." Kim, the first Korean to receive a Nobel Prize, had been nominated every year since 1987.

* Barbel Wartenberg-Potter, a prominent ecumenist and advocate of the equal participation of women in the church, has been elected Germany's third female Lutheran bishop. Wartenberg-Potter, 56, was elected on September 24 as bishop of the Holstein-Lubeck diocese of the North Elbian Evangelical Lutheran Church in northern Germany. She is currently general secretary of the Council of Christian Churches in Germany (ACKD), headquartered in Frankfurt. She will be installed as bishop on April 1, succeeding Karl Ludwig Kohlwage, who is retiring.

* Eileen Egan, a longtime advocate for nonviolence and cofounder in 1972 of the Catholic lay organization Pax Christi USA, died October 7 at the age of 88. Egan's social justice work began just after World War II with Catholic Relief Services, where she worked to resettle Polish survivors of Siberian exile and expelled ethnic Germans. Among Egan's close friends was Dorothy Day, cofounder of the Catholic Worker Movement. …

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