I enjoyed a very pleasant prelude to the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, which begins today. Yesterday I met our Board member Rev. James Somerville for lunch. The time wasn’t half long enough–no time for coffee at all. But pleasant indeed.
Rev. Jim is the Chair of the Consortium’s Board of Trustees’ Communications Committee. Naturally he is among the people to whom I report. We did discuss business, and after that we were able to really focus on the real business of the Consortium: ecumenism.
Rev. Jim is the Pastor of First Baptist Church here in DC, and I am Roman Catholic. We had a lot to discuss regarding our differing points of view. Jim thinks, and I agree, that an important part of ecumenical dialogue is for each participant to explain the meaningful aspects of his/ her own tradition.
It was an interesting discussion, amiable and well-intentioned. I understand him better, and in retrospect I understand my college friendships, one of which was with a Baptist “Preacher’s Kid,” better as well. I enjoyed the chance to put into words my love for the Eucharist–the heart of my faith as a Catholic.
Next time I see Jim it will be on a new level of respect than when we met yesterday. That is already a great deal. For the rest, I ask you to join me in asking the Holy Spirit to bless and improve all our efforts for unity and cooperation in the name of the Lord Jesus.