The document "Towards a Common Understanding and Vision" (CUV), which the WCCs 8th assembly endorsed on Saturday, is set to become a watershed document in the ecumenical movement as it moves into the new millennium.
In its report to assembly, Policy Reference Committee I acknowledged that the sometimes heated discussion during the plenary debate on the CUV showed "full consensus has not been achieved in either our vision or our understanding".
Member churches therefore "do not dare yet speak of a common vision or a common understanding".
While the CUV is completed as a document, further clarifications, corrections and elaborations would continue, the report said.
Recommendations for action included:
- to attend to the health of relationships among member churches, particularly but not only to the Orthodox members;
- to make CUV language understandable and accessible to all, not only to specialists;
- to avoid being drawn into an institutional preoccupation that obscures the wider ecumenical movements evangelical commitment;
- for member churches to review critically their commitment to membership and participation; and
- to nurture an ecumenical spirituality and moral integrity by which all are heard and all concerns respected.
Policy Reference Committee I continued: "Recognising that much remains to be done, but with deep appreciation for the insight contained in the policy statement, the committee affirms Towards a Common Understanding and Vision of the WCC as an important milestone in this, the jubilee year of the World Council of Churches, and as the starting point for our journey together into the new millennium."
It urged the WCC "to use it as a framework and point of reference as the WCC programmes are evaluated and developed in the future".
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Related documents and articles:
Common Understanding and Vision
Policy Reference Committee
Read other articles in this issue:
Mandela to WCC: tribute, and the development goal
Four fundamental questions for churches
Experiences people have had: Living the ecumenical connection
Orthodox preachers shares testimony about being lost
Visitors take home gift of a covenant
Bulgarian Orthodox quit WCC
Looking for the vision
WCC to set up commission with Orthodox churches
Trees will be reminder of the 8th assembly
Listen! Children can work
Letters: Provocative, misleading
50 years ago: Report from Amsterdam
Zimbabwe Christians criticise government
WCC celebrates 50th anniversary
Assembly yes to Christian 'forum'
|8th Assembly and 50th Anniversary|