All Africa Conference of Churches

The All Africa Conference of Churches is a fellowship of churches and institutions working together in their common witness to the gospel by:

  • Mobilizing to live faithfully the message of God's love
  • Nurturing a common understanding of the faith
  • Interpreting and responding to challenges to human dignity
  • Acting prophetically in word, life, and services for healing

The decision to create a regional organization was taken at a widely representative meeting at Ibadan, Nigeria, in 1958. The work of the Provisional and Continuation Committees appointed following the Ibadan Conference led to the birth of the AACC at its first assembly on 20 April, 1963, in Kampala, Uganda. The theme of the Kampala assembly was Freedom and Unity in Christ. The delegates addressed the colonial situation in the spirit of nationalism that permeated the political scene of the continent at the time. The message of Kampala to the churches in Africa asked a vital question that needs to be asked again today: "Why, in Cape Town, in Dakar, in Douala and Nairobi, on the plains and by the rivers of this land, must we continue in those divisions, which crucify the Lord until he returns?" The delegates identified themselves with the aspirations of the peoples of the continent towards development of dignity and a mature personality in Christ and exhorted the churches "to participate wholeheartedly in the building of the African nation". The AACC has accompanied the churches in their engagement in the decolonization and nation-building processes. It played a significant role in the dismantling of apartheid in Southern Africa. The journey towards unity and freedom initiated at Kampala has continued through seven other assemblies with different themes:


  • Abidjan (Ivory Coast) 1969 Working with Christ in Africa Today
  • Lusaka (Zambia) 1974 Living No Longer for Ourselves but for Christ
  • Nairobi (Kenya) 1981 Following in the Light of Jesus Christ
  • Lomé (Togo) 1987 You shall be my Witnesses
  • Harare (Zimbabwe) 1992 Abundant Life in Jesus Christ
  • Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) 1997 Troubled but not Destroyed
  • Yaoundé (Cameroon) 2003 Come Let Us Rebuild
  • Maputo (Mozambique) 2008 Step Forth in Faith

These themes manifest the effective prophetic witness of the church in Africa as the people of the continent struggle with the issues that confront them in their daily lives. The theme of the eighth assembly, Come Let us Rebuild, was a call to the churches to continue where they left off at Kampala. The impulse for the theme is the Nehemiah motif of rebuilding Jerusalem devastated by the Babylonian exile. Like Jerusalem of the time, the continent of Africa has gone through devastation of many sorts. The euphoria that characterized the period of independence has been lost and the continent has experienced conflicts and wars, resulting from disappointingly bad governance, corruption, global economic injustice, etc. Increased poverty has characterized the independent nations and has been further compounded with the emergence of the HIV/AIDS pandemic that continues to devastate the populations. The eighth assembly in Yaoundé re-issued the call of Kampala "to participate wholeheartedly in the building of the African nation".
The AACC continues to stand with the churches in addressing relevant issues that confront the continent, and to provide a platform of collective voices and collective action. Its foundational programmes are theology, mission and evangelism, ecumenical growth and interfaith relations. Core issues on its agenda include social and economic justice (overcoming poverty), health and wholeness (HIV/AIDS) and international relations (governance, ethics and morality). Its vision is "Called to work together for Life, Justice, Truth and Peace". The AACC has 133 member churches and 32 associate councils of churches in 39 countries, representing 120 million Christians in Africa. It is engaged in a thorough process of reconfiguring ecumenical relationships and cooperation in the continent, by integrating the churches, national councils, sub-regional fellowships and the continental body itself into a coherent network. The head office of the AACC is in Nairobi, Kenya; there is a regional office in Lomé, Togo.