(Faith and Order Paper no. 201)

This text results from the study on Ethnic Identity, National Identity, and the Search for the Unity of the Church done by Faith and Order with the collaboration of the WCC's Justice, Peace and Creation team. It offers resources for churches in situations of tension or conflict, especially where ethnic and national tensions are major factors, and suggests how Christian unity can further the churches' witness for reconciliation and justice.

Table of Contents:

I. Introduction

II. How the Study was Carried Out

A. Local self-studies

B. Interdisciplinary work

C. Integration

III. Situations of Conflict

A. A mission of reconciliation and unity

B. Local self-studies

C. Signs of hope

D. Common features found in these studies

IV. Perceptions from the Social Sciences

A. Human identity and community

B. The contribution of the social sciences

C. Tools for analysis

D. Reasons for conflict

E. Offering a positive response: possible roles for the churches

V. Biblical Perspectives

A. Methods and commitments

B. The use and misuse of biblical texts

C. The impartiality of God

D. Diversity in unity

E. A ministry of reconciliation

VI. Theological Perceptions

A. Baptism and eucharist

B. The ministry of reconciliation and healing

C. Christian unity and inter-confessional dialogue

D. Inter-religious dialogue

VII. Participating in God's Mission

VIII. An Invitation to the Churches


The ETHNAT Study Process