Report of the Commission for Christian Unity and Dialogue presented at Synod
The Report of the Commission for Christian Unity and Dialogue was presented at General Synod this afternoon.
Proposing the report Glenn Moore (Clogher) said that the commission provided the opportunity to engage with many other churches. He welcomed the appointment of the Bishop of Derry as president of the Irish Council of Churches.
He said the Covid presented a situation where face to face activities could not happen and observed that new relationships and friendships needed to be developed in person. He looked forward to more interaction as the covid situation improved. He pointed out that interactions with churches beyond our own borders helped with reaching out to people coming to our country. He thanked all involved in the commission.
Seconding the report, the Revd Katherine Poulton talked about the CCUD working groups. There are three active working groups focussing on Anglican and Ecumenical Affairs, European matters and Interfaith issues, she said.
She highlighted the work of the Anglican Consultative Council and said the Church of Ireland had representatives on a number of Anglican Networks. The Anglican and Ecumenical Affairs Working Group plans to continue linking with our network representatives to strengthen the links which are already established, she said.
The Interfaith Working Group advertised a competition run by the World Council of Churches on the future of Interreligious dialogue. One of the five winners of this competition was the Revd Christopher West, Curate Assistant in Enniskillen. The group has some interesting plans for the future, when Covid allows, and is exploring the idea of a conference or seminar on a pertinent issue, she stated.
The European Affairs Working Group works closely with the Irish Council of Churches European Affairs Committee and the Conference of European Churches, keeping abreast of issues which may impact people and the group notes that members feel they need to consider their place in Europe and the key international relationships which will be needed for the future, she reported.
Commenting on the report, Bishop Andrew Forster (Derry and Raphoe) spoke about the Irish Council of Churches and the Irish Interchurch Meeting. He said it was one of the highlights of his ministry to be involved in this organisation. He added that when people seek to grow in unity they become vessels of joy and engagement. He said that ecumenical engagement had been seen to be the enthusiasm of a few but it needed to be the passion of all in a secular world where God needed to be known.