212 World Alliance for Promoting International Friendship through the Churches, 1909-1948 (Fonds)

Archive plan context



Dates of Existence:1914 - 1948
Administrative / Biographical history:The Alliance, chiefly the outcome of the vision and devotion of an English layman, Lord Dickinson, was founded at Constance in August 1914 with the help of the Church Peace Union, with which the Alliance maintained close relationship through the years. Besides Dickinson, persons like Bishop Ammundsen of Haderslev, Denmark, Bishop Berggrav of Norway, Dr Henry A. Atkinson, Dr Charles S. AMcfarland, Prof. Friedrich Siegmund-Schultze, Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Henry-Louis Henriod, General Secretary of the World Alliance and of Life and Work from 1933 to 1938, played an important role in the life and activities of the Alliance.

The World Alliance understood itself as "a free organization working primarily in and through the churches for the cause of peace, and in association with the other branches of the ecumenical movement". Its purpose was to help substitute reason and arbitration for war as a means of settling international disputes by cooperating with many secular agencies, churches, colleges, schools and other groups working for the attainment of collective security and a just and abiding peace.

From 1933-1938 the Alliance together with Life and Work issued a joint bulletin, The Churches in Action, and cooperated in the International Christian Press and Information Service. Although after the war attempts were made to restablish the Alliance on an international basis, it became clear that it was no longer possible to restore the old organization. As the World Council of Churches and the International Missionary Council had set up the Commission of the Churches on International Affairs, the old World Alliance for Promoting International Friendship through the Churches was formally dissolved on 30 June 1948.
Places:Founded in Constance, Germany.
Legal status:Non-governmental organization (NGO)

Identity statement

Reference Code:212
Title:World Alliance for Promoting International Friendship through the Churches
Parallel forms of name:Alliance Universelle pour l'Amitié Internationale par les Eglises


Related corporate bodies, persons or families:Commission of the Churches on International Affairs (CCIA)
Life and Work


Name of creator(s):World Alliance for Promoting International Friendship through the Churches

Extent and medium

Creation Date(s):1909 - 1948
Level of description:Fonds
Type of Archival Material:Paper
Quantity:24 boxes
Running Metres:2.67

Content and structure

Scope and content:This fonds contain documents from the conferences, the minutes of numerous meetings of the International Council, the Executive Committee, Management Committee, Finance Committee. A Committee for Refugees was very active during the years 1933-1939. Also extensive records of the Youth Commission, documents on relations with the League of Nations and the International Labour Office, on peace negotiations and minority questions and correspondence such as Goodwill, Die Eiche, World Alliance News Letter preserved the continuity of the movement.

Access and Use

Conditions of access:For safeguarding reasons, only the microforms are available.
Physical characteristics:Bad condition

Allied Materials

Existence of copies:Box 38/13, Serie H-12, Microfiche no 1-289

Description control

Institution identifiers:Archives of the World Council of Churches
Date of description:2003


Entries:  World Alliance for Promoting International Friendship through Churches (Other Organisations\W)
  Bouvier, André (Rev.) (Individuals\B)
  Ammundsen, Valdemar (Prof.) (Individuals\A)
  Atkinson, Henry Avery (Dr) (Individuals\A)
  MacFarland, Charles Stedman (Rev.) (Individuals\M)
  Siegmund-Schultze, Friedrich (Rev. Prof. Dr) (Individuals\S)
  Sister organization (Subject\WCC General)
  Henriod, Henry-Louis (1887-1970) (Individuals\H)
  Zankov, Stefan (Prof. Dr.) (Individuals\Z)
  Dickinson, Willoughby H. (Lord) (Individuals\D)
  Berggrav, Eivind Joseph (Bishop) (1884-1959) (Individuals\B)
  Bonhoeffer, Dietrich (1906-1945) (Individuals\B)

Related units of description

Related units of description:see also:
24 Life and Work, 1937 - 1979 (Subfonds)

see also:
428 Commission of the Churches on International Affairs (CCIA) (Subfonds)


Permission required:None
Physical Usability:Without limits

URL for this unit of description

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