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The 1947 IMC conference in Whitby, Canada, was a small one. It reflected on the fundamental changes in what was considered a "revolutionary" world after the shock of the second world war. There was a need to rebuild not only countries, but also relations between people who had been in conflict. Whitby became famous for its slogan, "partnership in obedience". The term "partnership" had been used earlier, but it received particular emphasis at Whitby. Delegates abandoned the use of the language of "Christian" and "non Christian" countries, opening the way to new paths in mission theology. They also insisted on the importance of good relationships with the new World Council of Churches, which was to hold its first assembly in 1948.

Dr Marc Boegner, president of the French Protestant Federation, was a leading delegate to a joint meeting of representatives from the World Council of Churches and the International Missionary Council, in Whitby, Canada, 1947.