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Common Threads

Key Themes from Responses to The Church: Towards a Common Vision

Faith and Order Paper No 233

Churches now agree more than they disagree on many characteristics of the Church and its faith, mission, and life: the responses to the convergence statement The Church: Towards a Common Vision make this clear. Within this growth in agreement, key themes come to the fore, calling for greater understanding, study, and common conversation: visible unity, communion, mission, the role of the people of God in ministry and decision-making, sin and the church, and more. 
This volume presents essays on sixteen of these key themes. Each essay was written by a member of the subgroup of the WCC Commission on Faith and Order that focused on reading and analyzing the responses. The essays were then discussed by the group and revised in light of the discussions. Some of the themes have been prominent since the 1982 convergence statement Baptism, Eucharist and Ministry. Others have emerged more recently. 

Together with the report What are the Churches Saying about the Church?, the essays illuminate the many ways in which the vision of unity has inspired and changed the churches, as well as critical areas where future work is needed.

Joint working group between WCC, Roman Catholic Church Zoom Executive - 12 October 2021 Communiqué

The Executive Committee of the Joint Working Group (JWG) between the Roman Catholic Church and the World Council of Churches (WCC) met virtually on 12 October 2021 under the leadership of Most Reverend Diarmuid Martin, Catholic Archbishop Emeritus of Dublin, Ireland, and His Eminence Metropolitan Nifon of Târgoviște, Romanian Orthodox Church, who welcomed the participants. For the opening devotion Archbishop Martin shared a prayer attributed to Saint Patrick, Patron of Ireland, asking Christ “to be with us, before us, in us, and over all”.

Joint Working Group

Joint Working Group between the Roman Catholic Church and the World Council of Churches, 12-14 April 202, Plenary Communique

The Joint Working Group (JWG) between the Roman Catholic Church (RCC) and the World Council of Churches (WCC) met virtually for its plenary session from 12-14 April 2021 under the leadership of His Eminence Archbishop and Metropolitan Nifon of Târgoviște, Romanian Orthodox Church, and Most Reverend Diarmuid Martin, Catholic Archbishop Emeritus of Dublin.

Joint Working Group

Churches Respond To The Church: Towards A Common Vision Volume I

Faith and Order Paper No. 231

This publication and its companion volume collect the responses received to The Church: Towards a Common Vision (TCTCV) between 2013 and 2020.
The responses address the Church’s mission, unity, and its being in the Trinitarian life of God in order to encourage and advance the churches’ growth in communion with each other in apostolic faith, sacramental life, mission, and ministry for the sake of God’s world.
These responses are of great importance, not only because they test the points of convergence and of difference identified in TCTCV but also because they express the interests and concerns of many member churches and ecclesial bodies engaging in the work for Christian unity. They also provide invaluable insight and guidance for future work on ecclesiology.

Churches Respond To the Church: Towards a Common Vision Volume II

Faith and Order Paper No. 232

This publication and its companion volume collect the responses received to The Church: Towards a Common Vision (TCTCV) between 2013 and 2020.
The responses address the Church’s mission, unity, and its being in the Trinitarian life of God in order to encourage and advance the churches’ growth in communion with each other in apostolic faith, sacramental life, mission, and ministry for the sake of God’s world.
These responses are of great importance, not only because they test the points of convergence and of difference identified in TCTCV but also because they express the interests and concerns of many member churches and ecclesial bodies engaging in the work for Christian unity. They also provide invaluable insight and guidance for future work on ecclesiology.

Cultivate and Care

An Ecumenical Theology of Justice for and within Creation

Faith and Order Paper No. 226

The alarming climate change demands that the churches’ journey toward visible unity must include a sustained dialogue with a theology for justice for and within creation and seek ways to put the fruits of that dialogue into practice.

This theological document seeks to demonstrate how a committed response to the environmental devastation of our time can be motivated by Christian faith in God the creator, redeemer, and sanctifier.

We have sought, first, to point to some of the urgent environmental situations which cry out for Christian reflection and action. Next, we have sought to root such a response in the progressively increasing ecumenical consideration of creation on the part of the WCC in recent decades and in various theological, ecclesiological, and ecumenical convictions which our churches share and which call them to join together in engagement to protect the environment. Finally, we have proposed ways in which such engagement can take form.