The Secretary General of the World Evangelical Alliance (WEA), Bishop Dr. Thomas Schirrmacher, visited the President of the Estonian Parliament (former PM Jüri Ratas) to inform himself about the effect, the war against the Ukraine has on Estonia in general and because of the refugees from Ukraine and Russia, adding to those from Belarus.

Jüri Ratas (born 1978) was the 18th prime minister of Estonia from 2016 to 2021. He has been Leader of the Centre Party since 2016, and was the mayor of Tallinn from 2005 to 2007. Since 2021 he is the President (Speaker) of the Riigikogu, the Estonian one-chamber Parliament founded 1919. Ratas was a close ally of German longtime Chancellor Angela Merkel, with whom he keeps close contacts.

Ratas informed the Secretary General about the help Estonia is offering to refugees from Ukraine and a growing number of refugees from Russia. The Secretary General in turn reported on activities of the Estonian Evangelical Alliance and described the services of the World Evangelical Alliance and how WEA helps churches in and around Ukraine to convene refugee programs for refugees from Ukraine.

The Secretary General and Ratas also discussed the relationship of church and state in Estonia and the problems of the rivalry of the two Orthodox Churches in the country.

The meeting was arranged by the Secretary General’s friend Peeter Võsu (born 1958), international Secretary of the Estonian Christian Democratic Party, chairman of Estonian Christian Television, chairman of the Estonian branch of the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem, and board member of the Evangelical Alliance of Estonia and of YWAM Estonia.

Schirrmacher was accompanied by the General Secretary of the Estonian Evangelical Alliance, Pastor Indrek Luide, by his wife Christine Schirrmacher, his Chief Diplomat Matthias Boehning, and his staff Martin Warnecke and Debora Haede.

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