Agencies and Missionary Organizations

Reliable partners

God’s unconditional love grants us the ability to love our neighbors unconditionally as well. “For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is also dead.” (James 2:26) The church cannot be the Church of Christ if it does not act in accordance with this and bear witness to it. The churches have therefore founded organizations, over the centuries, dedicated to providing aid, hope, and a brighter future. The following four organizations are central to this mission within the Protestant Church in Switzerland PCS: HEKS/EPER, Bread for all, Mission 21, and DM-échange et mission.

Agencies

The PCS has established the following aid organizations:

Among the bodies of the foundations Swiss Church Aid and BFA are the PCS’s Council and Synod. The Synod elects the members of these foundations’ councils, and one member of the PCS Council is ex officio a member of each foundation’s council.

Missionary Organizations

The Protestant Church in Switzerland PCS works closely with two Swiss missionary organizations: mission 21 and DM – échange et mission. Historically, missionary societies emerged on the fringes of established national churches, sometimes even counterbalancing them. The structural and legal situation resulting from these circumstances differs significantly from that which the PSC has with regard to its agencies – Swiss Church Aid and Bread for All. Both organizations – as well as the PCS – are involved in international and ecumenical relations.

While DM – échange et mission is sustained by the French-speaking member churches of the PCS, mission 21 is supported by several missionary societies, without direct participation of the churches. Over the last twenty years, various attempts have been made to regulate anew relations between the agencies and missionary organizations, as well as relations between them, the PCS and its member churches. As regards DM - échange et mission and mission 21, negotiations in 2011 led to the establishment of a common platform for exchange – the Missionary Organizations and PCS Coordination Conference. This group enables a deeper exchange on the strategic direction of missionary organizations, and creates a platform for discussing the programs of mission 21 and DM - échange et mission with the PCS member churches at the Assembly of Delegates. Moreover, it strengthens the churches’ sense of responsibility for the missionary organizations by collecting financial contributions for the latter. Those responsible for external relations in the agencies, missionary organizations and the PCS meet once a year to inform each other about their programs and to coordinate possible and desirable areas of cooperation – within the framework of the Conference on External Relations.

Contact

Serge Fornerod, Vice-director and director of the External relations