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date: 19 January 2022

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter offers theological reflections on prayer for unity and then traces the historical development of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity from the Octave of Christian Unity established by Paul Wattson and the Society of the Atonement, through the revisioning of the week of prayer by Paul Couturier, to the present collaboration between the Faith and Order Commission of the World Council of Churches and the Catholic Church’s Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity in order to produce materials for the week. It then outlines the method of preparing the annual resource materials. Within the wider context of spiritual ecumenism and prayer for unity, the week of prayer is a particular opportunity to live out the Christian baptismal commitment to discipleship, to promote Christian reconciliation and unity, and to be conformed to the will of Christ.

Keywords: Christian unity, prayer, reconciliation, historical development, Paul Wattson, Octave of Christian Unity, Society of the Atonement, Paul Couturier, spiritual ecumenism, Week of Prayer

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