The book presents essays on key themes among responses to the convergence statement “The Church: Towards a Common Vision.”
Rev. Dr Andrzej Choromanski, from the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity of the Roman Catholic Church, said that preparing the paper on legitimate diversity has been one of the most fascinating but also challenging experiences of the past six years.
“Study of the materials and discussions with the members of the working group revealed to me with clarity that all Christians agree that diversity is a vital aspect of the church’s life and constitution,” said Choromanski. “However, the great challenge for future dialogue would be to develop common criteria for defining the limits of legitimate diversity, which is mutually enriching and not dividing.”
Dr Maria Munkholt, who teaches ecumenical studies at the University of Bonn, said it has been an interesting and enriching experience to be part of the conversation that led to this publication.
"It was a conversation not only with the other members of the study group, but also with all the churches and people who sent responses to ‘The Church: Towards a Common Vision,’ ” said Munkholt. “We found a lot of common ground between us and also differences that raise interesting new questions. We will continue the conversation and to deepen and widen our fellowship.”
The Orthodox theologian Dr Paul Meyendorff, emeritus professor of liturgical theology at the St Vladimir's Orthodox Theological Seminary, expressed appreciation for the churches’ response to “The Church: Towards a Common Vision.”
“This volume analyzes the responses and offers suggestions for future work,” said Meyendorff.
The WCC Faith and Order Commission is meeting on 8,10,15 and 17 March via videoconference.