Who Are we As People Called to Ecumenism?

Prof. Catherine Clifford, expert in ecumenism, helped participants address this question in a rich and challenging way on Saturday, February 3rd at the Diocesan Centre. Focusing on key documents, and a helpful visual depicting the historical relationships among the churches, she invited participants to examine the historical and current status of relationships between the catholic church and other churches sharing the one Christian Faith.

Cathy encouraged people to move away from simplest interpretations of our relationships to engage with the very complex issues and pastoral considerations that are always at work. There are no simple answers to questions like, who may receive communion? Rather, our church acknowledges the complex question this is and leaves much room for good pastoral discernment. Cathy highlighted the movement toward unity within diversity as characteristic of ecumenical dialogue, rather than attempts to make everyone the same.

Prof. Catherine Clifford engages participants in a rich and challenging session on ecumenism.

Working to build unity among all Christians is a fundamental call, not an option, for us all. The divisions among all of the Christian faith is scandalous and needs healing. This healing is the responsibility of all. All were encouraged to find ways to act upon this call in their own lives and the life of their parish communities. It was suggested that the lens of how might we engage in this activity with other Christian churches in our area? Ought always to be applied to parish activities.

Participants were engaged and challenged by the session. Many thankfully expressed new understandings and insights as a result.

The next session Who are We in Relationship with the Other Great Religions of the World? will be held on Sat., March 3rd, 2007 with Fabrice Blée, specialist in inter-religious dialogue, as presenter. All are welcome! [email protected] (613)738-5025 (x251) to register.

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