- The Early Stages: Pre-1910
- Laying the Foundations: 1910–1948
- Pivotal Years: 1948–1965
- Intense Activity: 1965–1990
- Consolidation and Challenge: 1990—Present
- Pentecostal and Charismatic
- Mission and Evangelism
- Faith and Order
- World Council of Churches
- Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity
- Bilateral Dialogues
- Chevetogne, Taizé, and the Groupe des Dombes
- United and Uniting Churches
- Regional and National Councils of Churches
- Interchurch Families
- Week of Prayer for Christian Unity
- Global Christian Forum
- Britain and Ireland
- United States of America
- Latin America
- The Middle East
- The Unity We Seek
- In Search of a Way
- Method in Ecumenism
- Kenotic Ecumenism
Abstract and Keywords
United and uniting churches have made a very significant contribution to the ecumenical movement. In seeking to assess that contribution, the chapter first defines what these churches are, considers the different types of union that have been created, examines the characteristics of these churches, and looks at the theological rationale for them. It goes on to trace the history of their formation from the beginning of the nineteenth century, and particularly during the years leading up to and following the Third Assembly of the World Council of Churches at New Delhi in 1961, under the influence of Lesslie Newbigin. Giving a theological assessment, it emphasizes that the existence of these churches, despite difficulties, provides places where the final unity of Christ’s one body is most clearly foreshadowed. They will always present proleptic visions of that goal.
James Haire is Professor Emeritus of Theology, Charles Sturt University, Canberra, Australia. He was formerly national President of the Uniting Church in Australia, President of the National Council of Churches in Australia, and Executive Director of the Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture.
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