Wednesday, September 13, 2017

A Puzzling Editorial

From The Living Church-

As committed ecumenists, we would like to thank The Living Church for its attention to the proposed full communion agreement between the Episcopal Church and the United Methodist Church [“Slightly Less than Full Communion,” June 18]. Faith and Order ecumenism is a part of our churches’ lives that continues in obscurity most of the time, but then becomes prominent when a particular fruit of the work reaches the time for harvest. As noted in your editorial, formal discussions between Episcopalians and Methodists have been in process for over 50 years. The timing of this agreement has nothing to do with theological struggles going on in either church, but rather with the maturity of the discussion into its final documentary and emerging relational form.

Some have questioned if the timing is proper, considering how our denominational bodies currently have different policies regarding LGBTQ inclusion. It bears remembering that at the time Called to Common Mission was agreed with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), our churches were in different places with respect to LGBTQ inclusion. Others have worried about what the United Methodist Church may look like after a 2019 special convention on these matters. Yet if the churches were to wait for a time in which neither was facing a matter of division or conflict — and this is the case with all ecumenical conversations between and across churches — no movement forward into shared life of any kind would be possible.

More here-

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