Unity and diversity

The Canberra statement immediately addressed the question of diversity within communion, stating that 'diversities which are rooted in theological traditions, various cultural, ethnic or historical contexts are integral to the nature of communion'. Canberra went on to point out that there must be limits to diversity: 'Diversity is illegitimate when, for instance, it makes impossible the common confession of Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour the same yesterday, today and forever' (Hebrews 13:8) and the confession of salvation for the whole of humanity according to Scripture and the apostolic preaching. The statement believed that, within these limits, diversity was a positive good: 'In communion diversities are brought together in harmony as gifts of the Holy Spirit, contributing to the richness and fullness of the church of God.'

Acting Together

The 'Lund Principle' of 1952 continues to be at the heart of ecumenical relating - that Churches should ask themselves 'whether they should not act together in all matters, except those in which deep differences of conviction compel them to act separately.'

With its challenge to our ways of working, this Principle is posed afresh in the various Covenant relationships, now part of the ecumenical scene.

Responding to the Prayer of Jesus

'………that they may all be one. As you, Father, are in me, and I am in you, may they also be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me'. (John17:20-21)

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