Photo: WCC

“During the sharing that followed, the participants acknowledged that the anti-COVID-19 measures had created an unprecedented challenge for churches worldwide, limiting the access of the faithful to pastoral care and restraining ecumenical contacts,” the communique reads. “At the same time, the crisis had necessitated the use of modern technologies, with churches developing new and enduring forms of pastoral ministry and ecumenical life.”

The group also commemorated 60 years since the founding of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, and 25 years since the publication of the encyclical Ut unum sint on the church’s commitment to ecumenism.

The group also discussed two study documents with recommendations to the churches, “Peacebuilding in Situations of Conflict” and “Migrants and Refugees—Ecumenical Challenges and Opportunities.”

The communique states: “Since the last meeting both documents had been revised in light of the new situation caused by the pandemic and the revisions have been approved.”

The communique acknowledges that “Relevant publications are being prepared and will be published soon” such as common witness (on environmental justice and religious pluralism), ecclesiology, and moral discernment in the churches by the Faith and Order Commission.

The next meeting will be held online in February 2021.


Read the communique of the meeting