Photo: WCC

Faith and Order Commission, China, June 2019, Photo: WCC

The commission will make decisions concerning the message to churches on the ecumenical significance of responses to The Church: Towards a Common Vision. The commission will also explore key aspects of the report “Churches and Moral Discernment. Facilitating Dialogue to Build Koinonia”, which addresses the challenges of ecumenical dialogue on conflicting moral issues. Finally, commissioners will discuss the proposal for a Sixth Faith and Order world conference in 2025.

After a study group analyzed almost 80 responses to the convergence document  The Church: Towards a Common Vision, the commission is preparing papers on 16 key controversial theological themes that appear in the responses, to be published in 2021. The message to the churches on the meaning of the responses for their common life will feed into the WCC 11th Assembly, to be held in 2022 in Karlsruhe, Germany.

The report “Churches and Moral Discernment. Facilitating Dialogue to Build Koinonia” acknowledges that churches respond differently to ethical questions, risking either divisions within themselves or preventing them from witnessing with one voice. The report explores and affirms the common ground that churches from different traditions hold in relation to engaging in ethical reasoning.

The proposed Sixth World Conference on Faith and Order in 2025, a year that will mark the 1700th anniversary of the first Ecumenical Council at Nicea, acknowledges that, while much has changed since that historic council, its issues are linked to present concerns: how we confess the apostolic faith in our time, and the vision of the one church as a conciliar fellowship.