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World Council of Churches Guest Badge



In July of 1968, James Baldwin spoke in Uppsala, Sweden at the World Council of Churches (WCC) Fourth Assembly. Martin Luther King Jr. had been slated to speak at the opening but was assassinated three months before the event. After accepting to speak in King’s place, Baldwin issued a challenge to the Assembly to take a moral stand on the issue of apartheid in South Africa and racial segregation in the United States. Baldwin’s speech contributed to the formation of the WCC’s Programme to Combat Racism, considered a particularly significant advancement for the Council at that time.