Newsletter > 24/01/2014 Saturday 31 October 2020

The reality of the Church in the current ecumenical debate: Encounter of the IFS; January 24 2014

Place: Pua Roma
PUA Last 24 January 2014 took place an encounter of reflection about the reality of the Church in the ecumenical debate, organized by the Franciscan Institute of Spirituality of the University Antonianum. The act took place in the context of the Week of prayer for the unity of the Christian and with occasion of the presentation of two volumes of ecumenical issues: The testimony of the Church in the contemporary world, published by Luca Bianchi in the Editions San Leopoldo and Pioneers of the spiritual ecumenism, published by the Editions Dehoniane, and edited by Ángel Borghino and Paolo Martinelli.

The encounter was moderated by prof. Roberto Giraldo, Rector of the Institute of Ecumenical Studies San Bernardino, and introduced by mons. Andrea Palmieri, Sub-secretary of the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of the unity of the Christian. Mons. Ioannis Spiteris, Archbishop of Corfù, Zante and Cefalonia and Apostolic Administrator of Tessalonica, and the prof. William Henn, Consultant of the Papal Council for the Promotion of the Unity of the Christian were the two lecturers. Mons. Spiteris, member of the International mixed Commission for the official theological dialogue between the Catholic-Roman Church and the orthodox Church, presented the current situation of this dialogue.
After a brief historical retrospective in which he remembered the dialogue ‘of love’ among the two Churches, intensely wanted mainly by Paul VI and Atenagora I; next step was the dialogue ‘of the truth’, that is to say to the real theological dialogue that has already been summed up in the documents approved by the mixed Commission, and in particular in the document of Ravena. This document, approved in 2007 with the title The ecclesiological and canonical consequences of the sacramental nature of the Church. Ecclesiastic communion, conciliarity and authority, is particularly significant since for the first time the Catholic and orthodox Churches have agreed on admitting that also in the universal Church it is necessary a primate, like it exists at local and regional level, and that this “universal primate” corresponds to the bishop of Rome. Naturally, it is recognized with sincerity that the two churches do not agree about how to interpret the way in that the authority of the bishop of Rome should be exercised, and its biblical and theological foundations.
Prof. Henn, member of the Commission Faith and Constitution of the Ecumenical Council of the Churches, has presented the last document that has been approved by that commission and that had the P. Henn among its main editors. Its title is The Church: toward a common vision. The document concludes almost twenty years of work on the ecclesiology and has a particular importance since it is not a simple study text, but of a “convergence text”.
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