In tough straits

Can the ecumenical logjam be broken?
The ecumenical path has always been narrow, but recent events cast a new light on the limited and shifting range of ecumenical possibilities. With the exception of the success of the rapprochement of Luth eran, Reformed and United churches in Europe, intra-Protestant ecumenism seems to be dead in the water.

Churches Uniting in Christ, the successor to the Consultation on Church Union (COCU), the most ambitious of all intra-Protestant ecumenical initiatives in the U.S., suspended operations in January 2008, and its future is uncertain at best. Full communion agreements between individual Protestant churches, which blossomed in the 1990s, have proven to make little difference in how the national churches operate or in the lives of most individual congregations. (Churches supposedly in full communion tear themselves apart over sexuality questions in complete isolation from each other, without seeking a common mind.)


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