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Religions 2018, 9(10), 291; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9100291

Ecumenical Ecclesiology in its New Contexts: Considering the Transformed Relationship between Roman Catholic Ecclesiology and Ecumenism

Department of Theology, College of Saint Benedict, St. John’s School of Theology & Seminary, Collegeville, MN 56321-2000, USA
Received: 20 August 2018 / Revised: 19 September 2018 / Accepted: 25 September 2018 / Published: 26 September 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ecumenism and Ecclesiology: The Challenge of Unity and Difference)
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Abstract

The quest for Christian unity is entering a new phase amidst the movement’s many voices, perspectives and tensions. Christians are witnessing the advent of an emerging ecumenical paradigm, which, because it is not fully realized, is still realizing its full definition. The paradigm operates in a global context rather than a Eurocentric one, and even as it is more global, it is simultaneously more local. It cultivates shared praxis while being less concerned with the comparison of dogmas. Ecclesiology is also entering a new paradigm which shares many features with its ecumenical counterpart, particularly its global perspective and interest in shared praxis ahead of dogmatic questions. Even though ecumenism and ecclesiology share common trajectories, their journeys are unfolding in largely parallel rather than cooperative and mutually-enriching ways. This raises the question: What opportunities might arise from examining the shifts in ecumenism and ecclesiology together? This article examines how new methodological and practical developments in these two fields can form and inform one another. It studies the shift to synodality in the Catholic Church and the turn towards discernment in the ecumenical sphere as manifestations of similar theological commitments and a common interest in cultivating participatory processes. The seismic changes reshaping the religious landscape are transforming the relationship between ecumenism and ecclesiology; yet a strong connection between them endures and illumines paths forward for the church in the third millennium. View Full-Text
Keywords: ecclesiology; ecumenism; synodality; discernment; authority ecclesiology; ecumenism; synodality; discernment; authority
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Colberg, K. Ecumenical Ecclesiology in its New Contexts: Considering the Transformed Relationship between Roman Catholic Ecclesiology and Ecumenism. Religions 2018, 9, 291.

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