Brussels, 26 January (ENInews) The Rev. Guy Liagre, president of the United Protestant Church in Belgium, was named general secretary of the Conference of European Churches (CEC) as of June 2012, according to a news release.
CEC said Liagre was elected by its central committee at its Geneva meeting 24 to 25 January. He succeeds the Rev. Viorel Ionita who retired as interim general secretary in October 2011.
After his election, Liagre commented: "For many years CEC has worked to ensure that the Christian voice is not neglected on the European scene. I see it as a challenge to work as a general secretary of a european ecumenical organisation in a time in which Europe and the world are rapidly changing into something too hard to easily predict. CEC is in the midst of renewing its organization and I am delighted to be able to participate in and stimulate that renewal."
Liagre, who was born in 1957, studied at the Protestant Theological Faculty in Brussels. He served as pastor of churches in Menen (1984-90) and Brussels (1990-2005) before being elected president of the United Protestant Church in 2005 and re-elected in 2009.
He currently chairs the Belgian Council of Religious Leaders as well as the organization in which the Belgian Anglican, Roman Catholic, Protestant and Orthodox churches cooperate, CEC said. He is also president of the council that represents all Protestant and Evangelical churches in their relations with the Belgian government.
Liagre has represented his church at many international ecumenical meetings. He is active in the World Methodist Council, the World Communion of Reformed Churches and the Community of Protestant Churches in Europe. He was a delegate at the CEC assemblies in Trondheim and Lyon and is currently a member of CEC's Church and Society Commission.
He earned a doctorate in modern church history from the Protestant Faculty of Theology in Brussels and has written extensively. He speaks Dutch, English, French, German and Afrikaans. Liagre is married with four grown children and three grandchildren.
Founded in 1959, CEC is a fellowship of some 120 Anglican, Orthodox, Protestant, and Old Catholic Churches in Europe and of 40 associated organizations. CEC has offices in Geneva, Brussels and Strasbourg.
Article from: ENI