ECUMENICAL AND INTERRELIGIOUS

The Episcopal Church is an active participant—as a full member or supporter—in a number of ecumenical and interreligious networks and regular events. This page provides links to these groupings in alphabetical order.
Anglican Communion Network for Interfaith Concerns
http://nifcon.anglicancommunion.org/
Bread for the World
http://www.bread.org/
Christian Churches Together
http://christianchurchestogether.org/
Church World Service
http://cwsglobal.org/
Churches for Middle East Peace
http://www.cmep.org
Churches Uniting in Christ
http://churchesunitinginchrist.org
The Consultation on Common Texts
http://www.commontexts.org
The National Council of Churches
http://nationalcouncilofchurches.us/
National Religious Partnership for the Environment
http://www.nrpe.org
National Workshop on Christian Unity
http://nwcu.org/
Parliament of the World's Religions
https://parliamentofreligions.org/
Religions for Peace USA
http://www.rfpusa.org/
The World Council of Churches
https://www.oikoumene.org/
The Episcopal Church is an active participant—as a full member or supporter—in a number of ecumenical and interreligious networks and regular events. This page provides links to these groupings in alphabetical order. Anglican Communion Network for

May 25-June 4, 2017

Thy Kingdom Come is a global prayer movement which the Archbishop of Canterbury is inviting people around the world to join. The wave of prayer will start in May and run for 10 days between the Christian festivals of Ascension and Pentecost.

May 25-June 4, 2017 Thy Kingdom Come is a global prayer movement which the Archbishop of Canterbury is inviting people around the world to join. The wave of prayer will start in May and run for 10 days between the Christian festivals of Ascension

The day’s events included first a common prayer in Lund Cathedral, led by Pope Francis and Lutheran World Federation President Munib Younan and General Secretary Martin Junge; the procession was led by a Salvadoran cross created for the occasion and involved women and men from every continent and many generations.

The Episcopal Church was invited to attend through our ecumenical partnerships with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in American and the Church of Sweden. The Rev. Margaret Rose, Deputy for Ecumenical and Interreligious Relations, attended on behalf of Presiding Bishop Michael Curry. The liturgical celebration in Lund was followed in the afternoon with an event at the nearby Malmö sports arena and included a joint commitment between the Lutheran World Federation and Caritas International to work together to alleviate poverty and respond to refugees.

This event included music and testimonies around a large, illuminated floor cross. Anglican and other ecumenical partners from around the globe were represented in this diverse and marvelous gathering of confession, repentance and call to action.

Videos are available at www.lutheranworld.org; you might especially enjoy the press conference, which includes discussions of DotW and Eucharistic hospitality: https://vimeo.com/189685569.

The day’s events included first a common prayer in Lund Cathedral, led by Pope Francis and Lutheran World Federation President Munib Younan and General Secretary Martin Junge; the procession was led by a Salvadoran cross created for the occasion

Reports by Ellen K. Wondra

Commission on Faith and Order, June 17-24, 2015, Monastery of Caraiman, Busteni, Romania

Following the 10th Assembly of the World Council of Churches in 2013, the Commission on Faith and Order was reconstituted and had its first meeting at the Monastery of Caraiman near Busteni, Romania. The Commission comprises 49 members from 5 continents, supplemented by 5 WCC staff members, 3 consultants, and 1 guest. In addition to TEC, two other churches of the Anglican Communion are formally represented: the Church of England and the Anglican Church of Southern Africa.

This was the first meeting for about two-thirds of the Commissioners. Much of the meeting entailed orienting new members and reviewing the purposes and procedures of Faith and Order. The Commission’s primary purpose is “to serve the churches as they call one another to visible unity in one faith and in one Eucharistic fellowship, expressed in worship and common life in Christ, through witness and service to the world, and advance towards that unity in order that the world may believe.” Over the next eight years, this work will be carried out within the framework of the WCC’s Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace.

Considerable time was given to building a consensus about major task areas for Faith and Order for the next few years. Three general areas of study were discerned, along with initial areas of focus:

  • The Church on a Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace in Today’s World
    • Theological and ecclesiological foundations of pilgrimage, justice and peace;
    • Proclaiming and confessing Jesus Christ with one voice in a multireligious, multicultural world;
    • Church facing the issues of justice, peace and creation; issues of migration, racism, economic justice
  • Pilgrimage Towards a Common Vision of the Church (with attention given to specific themes of authority and anthropology):
    • Promote the reception and response to the ecclesiological study The Church: Towards a Common Vision and analyze official responses;
      • give further attention to bilateral dialogues engaging the theme of the church;
      • indicate further work to be done;
    • use The Church as a means for dialoguing with “newer” or “emerging” churches on their understanding of the church;
    • convene a consultation exploring the progress made from Baptism, Eucharist and Ministry to The Church: Towards a Common Vision;
    • study ecclesiology in relation to pneumatology (i.e. the role of the Holy Spirit in the life of the church);
    • reflect on newer ecclesial movements and expressions
  • The Church on a Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace Engaged in Moral Discernment:
    • Proceed with the moral discernment project on the basis of what has already been accomplished;
      • prepare study materials for its use and discussion locally;
      • organize a consultation in which points of agreement, methods, and differences are clarified;
      • explore what processes are at work when a community decides to change its moral position on a particular issue.
    • Two small working groups, one on authority, both in relation to moral discernment and in relation to ecclesiology; and another one on anthropology.

For the remainder of the meeting the study groups met and organized their work for the coming two years. All Study Groups are expected to meet at least once before the next Commission plenary in Summer 2017.

Participation in the Commission on Faith and Order offers TEC an opportunity to participate in the shaping of the worldwide ecumenical agenda—a possibility not presently offered by the Anglican Communion—and to learn from other churches in regard to important issues such as justice and peace, and moral discernment in relation to ecumenical ecclesiology. These are both important themes within TEC as well as between TEC and its dialogue partners. TEC’s representative is a member of Study Group 2, working on responses to The Church and on fostering relations with “newer” and “emerging” churches, including evangelical and Pentecostal churches.

 

Meeting of Study Group 2, Pilgrimage Towards a Common Vision of the Church, June 16-20, Klasztor Ojców Dominikanów, Krakow, Poland

At this meeting, Study Group 2 divided into two subgroups: Subgroup 1 to discuss WCC engagement with “newer” and “emerging” churches (including Pentecostal, evangelical, and charismatic churches); and Subgroup 2 to assess responses to the WCC convergence document The Church.

Subgroup 1 has identified seven categories of ecclesiology with which a Faith and Order dialogue can be engaged. A 3000 paper for each ecclesiology will be completed by January 2017. is planned to provide by January 2017. The objective of these papers is to ask: “How do these ecclesiologies respond to TCTCV?”. Connections with the leaders of mentioned churches will be also planned. The members of the Sub-group 1 have considered that there is no need to meet again before the Commission 2017. The work can be done by videoconferences. A first contact after Krakow’s meeting will take place in September 2016, organized by the F&O’s Secretariat.

Subgroup 2 discussed 19 of the 20 responses to The Church received thus far. Nineteen of these responses are from Europe, Australia and North America; one is from India. The group discussed how to elicit more responses from the Global South and non-Anglophone churches; and how to discern the significance of the low number of responses from these areas. The responses are largely welcoming and positive towards The Church, with various points of critique, mention of issues that are still contested, and many comments on themes that need further elaboration. The group identified a number of common themes that group members will investigate more carefully in the responses:

  • Apostolic faith in relation to the historic episcopate; authority and primacy
  • The role of laity and synods
  • The relationship between the local and universal Church
  • Definition of legitimate diversity, the nature of unity, the nature of authority and the theme of moral discernment.
  • Koinonia – a theme that is received positively, but requires more elaboration
  • The theme of sin in relation to the church as such
  • Sacraments and the sacramentality of the church
  • Further work on Chapter 4
  • Reception

The deadline for responses is December, 2016, with responses expected from TEC, the Roman Catholic Church, and the Orthodox churches. The subgroup will meet via Skype or a similar platform, and face to face in Geneva, Switzerland, in January 2017.

The Episcopal Church’s representative, Ellen Wondra, a member of Subgroup 2, will work with TEC to produce a response to The Church before January 2017. A draft response will go to the meeting of Executive Council in October 2016, for consideration by the Joint Standing Committee on World Mission and, it is hoped, Executive Council as a whole. Dr. Wondra will also review responses to The Church to discover how they consider the theme of koinonia.

Respectfully submitted

(The Rev.) Ellen K. Wondra, PhD
Research Professor Emerita of Theology and Ethics
Bexley Seabury Seminary Federation
Chicago, Illinois

Reports by Ellen K. Wondra Commission on Faith and Order, June 17-24, 2015, Monastery of Caraiman, Busteni, Romania Following the 10th Assembly of the World Council of Churches in 2013, the Commission on Faith and Order was reconstituted and had

Following a two-day meeting in April, The Episcopal Church-United Methodist Dialogue Committee issued the following Communique:

April 27, 2016

Episcopalians and United Methodists met in Charlotte, North Carolina, for the third session of their Dialogue on Full Communion (25-27 April 2016). The ten committee members, along with staff from each church, shared in conversation, meals, prayer, and a celebration of the Eucharist. It was a time for building relationships between representatives of two sibling churches that have long desired to grow closer in common witness to the gospel of Christ and in mission for the healing of God’s world.

The dialogue session made substantive progress towards a proposal for full communion between The Episcopal Church and The United Methodist Church. Committee members continued to learn about the history, beliefs, practices, and ways of living as church that are found in each tradition. Many are shared in common by both traditions.  Dialogue participants also discussed and appreciated our distinctiveness.  Among these are the ways our churches have shaped their institutions and approaches to ministry appropriate to their particular missional contexts.

Dialogue participants shared their own questions with one another and began developing FAQs.  Sharing answers to these queries will assist both churches as we grow closer in relationship with one another. 

The next session will be held in October 2016.  

Alongside their work as a Dialogue Committee, participants, noting the recent passage of House Bill 2 in the State Legislature of North Carolina, found themselves confronted with an example of the common challenges faced by all Christians as they work to faithfully give witness to the sacred dignity of all people. The Committee, in recognition of the harmful effects of the bill, stands with our Episcopal and United Methodist bishops in North Carolina, calling upon the legislature to repeal this discriminatory law.

The central point of Episcopalians and United Methodists working to strengthen their relationship with each other is faithfully and effectively to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ and to work for the healing of a divided and suffering world.

Our gratitude goes to the Rev. James Howell and Myers Park United Methodist Church for their gracious hospitality.   

 

Participants: 

Bishop Frank Brookhart (Episcopal Co-chair)

Bishop Gregory Palmer (United Methodist Co-chair)

The Rev. Dr. Pamela Lightsey (United Methodist)

The Rev. Jordan Haynie Ware (Episcopal)

Dr. Deirdre Good (guest) (Episcopal)

The Rev. Dr. Robert J. Williams (United Methodist)

Bishop David Rice (Episcopal)

The Rev. Patricia Farris (United Methodist)

The Rev. Dr. Tom Ferguson (Episcopal)

Bishop Mary Ann Swenson (United Methodist)

The Rev. James Howell (United Methodist)

Staff:  Dr.  Glen Alton Messer (United Methodist), Ms. Jeanette Nunez (United Methodist), the Rev. Margaret Rose (Episcopal)

 

Following a two-day meeting in April, The Episcopal Church-United Methodist Dialogue Committee issued the following Communique: April 27, 2016 Episcopalians and United Methodists met in Charlotte, North Carolina, for the third session of their

The Episcopal Church is seeking representatives to serve on ecumenical dialogues and coordinating committees. Representatives can be lay or ordained, and must be committed to and have experience in ecumenism.

"Engaging other Christians through our ecumenical dialogues and networks is vital work," commented the Rev. Dr. Charles K. Robertson, Canon to the Presiding Bishop for Ministry Beyond the Episcopal Church, "and one more way of engaging the Jesus Movement and its focus on reconciliation." 

The Rev. Margaret Rose, Deputy to the Presiding Bishop for Ecumenical and Interreligious Relations, added, "We seek representatives with scholarly and practical experience in ecumenical work to serve on the dialogues and coordinating committees."

The five dialogues and committees are:

 

  • Anglican - Roman Catholic USA Dialogue Committee
  • United Methodist - Episcopal Dialogue Committee
  • Lutheran (ELCA) - Episcopal Coordinating Committee
  • Episcopal - Presbyterian (PCUSA) Dialogue
  • Moravian - Episcopal Coordinating Committee

 

Episcopal representatives to these bodies will be appointed by Executive Council upon the recommendation of the Presiding Bishop and the President of the House of Deputies.

At this time, the committees with the Roman Catholics, the United Methodists, and the Lutherans have vacancies that need to be filled as soon as possible. Candidates should submit a letter of interest, along with a resume/CV to the Rev. Margaret Rose at mrose@episcopalchurch.org.

The next round of the Anglican - Roman Catholic USA Dialogue Committee (ARCUSA) will address the subject, “Reconciliation in Holy Scripture and Christian Tradition.” As in previous iterations of ARCUSA, members of the dialogue should possess a Ph.D. or its equivalent, or display scholarly experience in theology and practice, as well as expertise in the subject addressed. Statements from previous rounds of dialogue are collected here.

The United Methodist - Episcopal Dialogue Committee seeks practitioners and scholars with experience and knowledge of ecumenical full communion agreements, as well as particular knowledge of the United Methodist Church. This committee’s goal is full communion in the coming years and invites those who have skill and experience in local mission and ministry partnerships to apply.   

The Lutheran-Episcopal Coordinating Committee (LECC) works to encourage new levels of trust, cooperation, and mission, as well as support existing cooperative ministries, between the two churches. We are in the second decade of Called to Common Mission, our full communion agreement.   That agreement can be found here.

For more information contact Rose at mrose@episocpalchurch.org, or go to http://www.episcopalchurch.org/page/ecumenical-interreligious.

 Deadline for submissions is May 1. 

The Episcopal Church is seeking representatives to serve on ecumenical dialogues and coordinating committees. Representatives can be lay or ordained, and must be committed to and have experience in ecumenism. "Engaging other Christians through our

Catholic, Evangelical, Pentecostal, Orthodox, African-American and Protestant Christian Communions (Denominations) in the U.S.A. witnessing together to in the U.S.A. witnessing together to the reconciling power of the Gospel of Jesus.

Catholic, Evangelical, Pentecostal, Orthodox, African-American and Protestant Christian Communions (Denominations) in the U.S.A. witnessing together to in the U.S.A. witnessing together to the reconciling power of the Gospel of Jesus.

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