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Special online issue of The Ecumenical Review focuses on World Council of Churches–Roman Catholic relations

25 June 2018

To mark the visit of Pope Francis to the World Council of Churches (WCC) on 21 June, a special online “Virtual Issue” of the WCC’s quarterly journal, The Ecumenical Review, is offering a set of articles about relationships between the WCC and the Roman Catholic Church.

The articles are taken from past issues of the journal, going back to its first volume (1948–49) with a contribution by the first WCC general secretary Willem A. Visser ‘t Hooft on  “The Roman Catholic Church and the First Assembly of the World Council Of Churches,” which took place in 1948.

Several articles deal with the Roman Catholic Church’s Second Vatican Council, including assessments by the Swiss Protestant theologian Karl Barth and Lukas Vischer, one of the WCC observers at Vatican II and later director of the WCC’s Commission on Faith and Order.

Despite a shared commitment to common witness within the one ecumenical movement, in 1972  the Roman Catholic Church decided not to seek WCC membership, reflected in the article on “Patterns of Relationships between the Roman Catholic Church and the World Council of Churches,” an issue discussed in greater length in the article, “An Unfinished Agenda.”

Other articles deal with the common work in the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, the encyclical by Pope John Paul II on ecumenism, Ut Unum Sint, assessments of WCC-Roman Catholic relationships, and “Pope Francis and Ecumenism.”

All articles may be freely downloaded.

“Virtual Issue on the World Council of Churches and the Roman Catholic Church”

Articles

The Roman Catholic Church and Ecumenism

Martin Bräuer: Pope Francis and Ecumenism
Volume 69, 2017, Issue 1, pp. 4-14

William Henn: Ut Unum Sint and Catholic Involvement in Ecumenism
Volume 52, 2000, Issue 2, pp. 234-245

Dianne C. Kessler: The New Catholic Ecumenical Directory
Volume 47, 1995, Issue4, pp. 419-425

Relationships between the World Council of Churches and the Roman Catholic Church

Konrad Raiser: Fifty Years after the Second Vatican Council: Assessing Ecumenical Relations from the Perspective of the World Council of Churches
Volume 67, 2015, Issue 2, pp. 285-294

Jan Grootaers: An Unfinished Agenda: The Question of Roman Catholic Membership of the World Council of Churches, 1968–1975
Volume 49, 2009, Issue 3, pp. 305-347

Dagmar Heller: The Soul of the Ecumenical Movement - The History and Significance of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity
Volume 50, 1998, Issue 3, pp. 399-404

W. A. Visser ‘t Hooft: WCC‐Roman Catholic Relations
Volume 37, 1985, Issue 3, pp. 336-344

John Cardinal Willebrands, Eugene Carson Blake: Patterns of Relationships between the Roman Catholic Church and the World Council of Churches
Volume 24, 1972, Issue 3, pp. 247-249

The Second Vatican Council

Lukas Vischer: After the Fourth Session of the Second Vatican Council
Volume 18, 1966, Issue 2, pp. 150-189

Karl Barth: Thoughts on the Second Vatican Council
Volume 15, 1963, Issue 4, pp. 357-367

Early Considerations

W. A. Visser ‘t Hooft: Notes on Roman Catholic Writings Concerning Ecumenism
Volume 8, 1956, Issue 2, pp. 191-197

V ‘t H”: The Roman Catholic Church and the First Assembly of the World Council of Churches
Volume 1, 1949, Issue 2, pp. 197-201

The Ecumenical Review is published by Wiley on behalf of the WCC.

More information about The Ecumenical Review (including subscription information).