CEC General Secretary Rev. Dr. Guy Liagre conducted the press conference alongside Vilmos Fischl, General Secretary of the Ecumenical Council of Churches in Hungary (ECCH) and Orsolya Somosfalvi, Local Assembly Coordinator. Fischl and Somosfalvi are a part of the Local Planning Committee working with the CEC Assembly Planning Committee and Liturgical Committee based out of Geneva.
CEC was started in 1959 and now boasts 115 member churches from across Europe. Member churches represent both Protestant and Orthodox faith traditions. It has offices in Brussels, Geneva and Strasburg with each office focusing on a different facet of CEC's ministry.
Fischl said that the communication between committees can make the process difficult and opens up opportunities for mistakes, but that the groups are working extremely hard together to create a successful conference. Recently, the Assembly Worship Committee also met in Budapest to prepare a liturgy for the opening worship and morning prayers during the Assembly. Based on its theme, a hymn was composed which will be introduced during the opening worship at the Reformed Church on Pozsonyi Street. For this occasion, the organizers invited high-level Hungarian state representatives and church leaders. The worship will be broadcasted live on 3 July.
CEC organizes a General Assembly every six years, but according to Liagre, this upcoming meeting in Budapest is a historic one. Four hundred people are expected to attend the conference, where they will discuss the organization of CEC in view of the future. Liagre said the aim is to continue the work that CEC does, but see if it can operate in a more rational way.
The most important thing, however, is that they present a united Christian voice in Europe. "If we want to be heard in a pluralistic society, then we can only be heard in a united way," Liagre said.