The Ecumenical Movement: Quo Vadis?
Reconsidering Ecumenism in Central and Eastern Europe Special Issue on the 10th Anniversary of the Review of Ecumenical Studies
Ten years ago, in the promising aftermath of the Third European Ecumenical Assembly, in Sibiu, 2007 the first issue of the Review of Ecumenical Research (RES) was coming out of print, with an ambitious agenda in its opening editorial. RES sought nothing less thanthe truth. Truth cannot be preserved if one withdraws behind one’s own limits. “Truth relies rather on dialogue, in its double sense: that one may bear witness for it, but also to prove it” – as it was defined in the opening editorial.
This is equally valid today. To recognize the others in truth, in their similarities and their strangeness, also serves for a deepened self-knowledge. To find the other always means to find one’s own self as well. It also clarifies what actually still separates us and what already brings us together. In ten years of existence of RES, this attitude of authentic ecumenical dialogue has not been its direct topic but has set the background on which a variety of questions have been addressed. For this anniversary issue, RES proposes an analysis of the current situation, on the question of ecumenism in Central and Eastern Europe. Contributions will focus on – but will be not be limited to – the subsequent core questions:
- To what extent is the encounter with the ‘other’ seen as an opportunity to serve the truth – and to what extent is the ‘other’ seen as a threat to one’s true allegiance to the truth?
- The ecumenical movement knew different stages with different thematic priorities. Which of these phases and themes has left their mark on Central and Eastern Europe? And which of these lacked a proper reception within churches?
- What are the social, political, cultural and dogmatic particularities that have hampered the dialogue between churches? And what aspects have, on the other hand, fostered dialogue?
- Are there any examples from the ecumenical practice (be it at the grassroot level, be it in the official church dialogues or at the theological level) which have been particularly successful and should be better known?
- To what extent are the results of the ecumenical dialogue received in theological research and teaching? Are these taken into account when reflecting upon core issues, e.g. the recognition of sacraments, the role of the women in the Church?
- Is there a future for an expressly ecumenical endeavour for this part of Europe today? How can it or should it furtherdevelop? Which are its main challenges?
The participants will also be invited to continue discussions on the issue to a conference in the fall of 2020 on the anniversary conference of RES.
Deadline: November 1, 2019
Contributions will be published in English or German and are to follow RES guidelines.
Contributions will be published in English or German and are to follow RES editorial guidelines http://www.res.ecum.ro/guidelines/.