ECYP ESTONIA 2016 – BRIDGING THE GAP
Estonia is situated in a unique manner on the fringe of Europe and has thus historically been a natural crossroad in several ways. Geographically, politically, linguistically and theologically Estonia has grappled with the reality of being a country of crossroads. It has been at the border of kingdoms and empires such as Sweden, Russia, Lithuania and the Holy Roman Empire. Today it is still the meeting point of Russia and the West.
Drawing on Estonia’s rich past in this respect and on the biblical value of reconciliation, ECYP 2016 revolved around the theme of Bridging the gap.
Each participant worked in a committee dealing with a specific topic. The committees were mentored by specialists in the issues.
At the end of the event, the committees presented their resolutions in the general assembly.
- Natural resources & Environment
Who offers hope, leads. What kind of thinking and lifestyle do we need today so that we could be “people of hope” (Rom.8:19; 1. Pet. 3:15)? In the committee we try to look into ideas that are holding us from doing relevant things for the future of the planet, as well as seeking for some positive trends.
mentored by Tapio Luoma-Aho (Finland)
- International politics
We will be discussing the re-emergence of nationalism in Europe and the challenges it poses, particularly in the context of relations between Russia and other European nations. We will start by thinking about the concept of nationalism and its impact on relations between Russia and the West. The group will then consider how Christians should respond to this challenge, and the ways in which bridges can be built between communities and nations.
mentored by Rosemary Caudwell (United Kingdom) and Ineta Lansdovne (Latvia)
- Estonian politics
We will be looking at the story of Estonia, trying to understand the opportunities for success for small countries? Trying to determine the problems and successes of different countries. How and why they differ? What decisions and circumstances are behind the success? How can church’s help the society during the period of radical and not so radical change? What should be the role of the church and the role of Christian’s in it’s community in transforming a country?
mentored by Vilver Oras (Estonia)
SPEAKERS AND MENTORS
(In Alphabetical order)
- Rosemary Caudwell (United Kingdom)
Rosemary Caudwell is from London, UK. She worked as a lawyer in the UK Government Legal Service and in the European Commission, Brussels. Her first degree is in Philosophy, Politics and Economics. She has just completed a Masters in Contemporary Missiology (Europe).
- Jeff Fountain (New Zealand – The Netherlands)
Together with his wife Romkje, Jeff Fountain is the initiator of the Schuman Centre, and is based in Heerde, the Netherlands. Jeff was the director of YWAM Europe for 20 years, 1990-2009. He is author of Living as People of Hope, Deeply Rooted and other titles (available under Schuman Resources), and also writes weekly word, a weekly column on issues relating to Europe.
- Viktoria Ladõnskaja (Estonia)
Viktoria Ladõnskaja is an Estonian politician and a member of its parliament, or Riigikogu. She represents the Tallinn constituency of Kesklinn, Lasnamäe and Pirita as a member of the Pro Patria and Res Publica Union party. Ladõnskaja was elected to the Riigikogu in the 2015 election with 1,393 personal votes. Before starting her career in politics, Ladõnskaja worked as a freelance journalist and writer.
- Ineta Lansdovne (Latvia)
Ineta Lansdovne is from Latvia but from 2004-2016 worked in missions and community development in Southeast Asia. She completed a course in Reconciliation and Justice Studies in England and has focused on international and interfaith relations in the global and European context. She has participated in various peace building projects in England, Latvia, Thailand, Myanmar and also writes a weekly blog peaceroads.com Currently she is pursuing studies in Theology and World Religions at University of Latvia in Riga.
- Tapio Luoma-Aho (Finland)
Tapio Luoma-Aho has a M.Sc. in Tropical forest ecology (University of Helsinki). During the last 12 years he has worked and served in several inter-governmental and non-governmental organizations, including e.g. International Plant Genetic Resources Institute. Currently Tapio is coordinating a network under the Evangelical Alliance of Finland to prepare for the celebration of Finland’s 100 years of independence, which coincides with the 500th anniversary of the beginning of the Reformation.
- Iina Mattila (Finland)
Iina Mattila used to work in politics both in the parliament and in the government in Finland 2011-2015. Nowadays she focuses on prayer for Finland and those in power and dreams of a wider prayer network in Finland. Iina is a special education teacher by education. She loves to see young people find their calling and walk bravely with God in different areas of the society.
- Vilver Oras (Estonia)
Vilver Oras was born in 1977 in Tallinn. He has studied theology and has a degree in law. He is the associate pastor of the Kalju Baptist Church (the first Baptist church of Tallinn). He was working as a lawyer for 11 years before moving to crises management at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Estonia. He has promoted churches’ cooperation with the local communities and has been part of starting many initiatives on the local level between the church and the local community.
- Cédric Placentino (Italy – Finland)
Cédric Placentino was born into an Italian family in Belgium. Married to Elina, a Finnish lady who spent most of her childhood in the United Kingdom, they moved to Finland last year with their two daughters. Having a heart for Europe, Cédric and Elina work in various organisations, such as the Schuman Centre for European Studies, the Pentecostal European Fellowship, and the 24-7 prayer movement. Cédric holds an M.A. in Applied Science and is currently involved in local politics.
- Erki Tamm (Estonia)
Erki Tamm was born in 1968. As a third generation pastor he is now serving as a senior pastor at the Kalju Baptist Church (the first Baptist church of Tallinn). Erki has worked in the local government level at Kärdla (the biggest town in Hiiumaa, an island off the west coast of Estonia) as a chairman of the city council and a deputy mayor. Starting April 2016 he is also the president of the Union of Free Evangelical and Baptist Churches of Estonia. He is married to Riina and they have four daughters.
- Urmas Viilma (Estonia)
Urmas Viilma is the Archbishop of the Estonian Evangelical Lutheran Church. He studied theology at the EELC Theological Institute which he graduated in 1998. Urmas Viilma was ordained deacon on May 2nd, 1993, and priest on September 15th, 1998. From 1991 until 2014, Urmas Viilma was a school teacher. He taught religious studies in several schools. For many years, he served also as a school chaplain.
The event took place in several different locations:
- Methodist Church of Tallinn
- Annex of the Estonian Parliament – Riigikogu
- Kalju Baptist Church – Tallinn
- Pentecostal Church EKNK – Tallinn