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  • April 22, 2008


    As you can see, I am catching up on my blogging today.

    Quite awhile back I post a version of Crossin 10 points for new students.

    I though it might be helpful if I posted the outline for my basic talk on Ecumenism
    for parishes and congregations. I have given this talk a few times in recent weeks.

    I build on this outline–so it is not really exactly
    what I say. But perhaps you will find it useful for your reflection.

    • Crossin’s Ten Points on Ecumenism
      and InterReligious Relations Today

      1. Conversion—The importance of a change of heart to ecumenism cannot be overestimated. Ecumenism must go from an intellectual understanding to a commitment of the heart.

      2. A Communion of Communions—The goal is to bring all together with the distinctiveness of the varied traditions. It is not to obliterate those distinctions but to find the common core around which we can unite. There will be diversity in unity and unity in diversity

      3. Structures—
      a. World Council of Churches
      b. National Council of Churches
      c. Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity
      d. The ‘Big Tent’—Christian Churches Together

      4. InterFaith Dialogue—This is important but is not the same as Ecumenism. The goal of ecumenism is visible church unity while the goal of InterFaith dialogue is mutual understanding. The two efforts are complementary in that they both require mutual respect, attentive listening and clear explanation.

      5. The Both/And–The necessary relationship of doctrine and life, Scripture and Tradition, etc. For Christian unity things go together.

      6. Cultural differences do make a difference
      With the Orthodox—who never experienced either the Enlightenment or the Reformation.
      In Africa and Asia—the struggle to enculturate.

      7. Diversity in Unity is especially challenging in the moral arena
      Divisive moral issues —Ecumenism often moves from the less difficult to the more difficult.
      Can we agree to disagree on some things?

      8. Differences in the Understanding of the Church
      a Have some reforming movements run their course?
      b Local or international
      c Hierarchical/Participative

      9. Local Reception—agreements at the top must be received locally
      Interchurch Families
      What are the practices that form us ecumenically?

      10. God’s ways are mysterious. God seems to work slowly. Yet there has been abundant change in the last few years. The key foundation is prayer [See Ut Unum Sint, Pauline Books and Media, 1995.] Christian Unity is a gift of God.

      Saturday, April 05, 2008
      [1] My original 10 points were drawn from an article by Michael Kinnamon in Ecumenical Trends in May, 2001.