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date: 25 May 2020

Abstract and Keywords

The chapter considers the development of ecumenism in the United States, noting particular historical, cultural, and religious factors that have influenced relations there between Christians from many different backgrounds. Religious freedom, associated with the separation of Church and state, has given rise to a rich diversity of religious communities, but tolerance has also in some ways blurred confessional boundaries and complicated theological dialogue and the effort for visible Christian unity. The origin and role of the National Association of Evangelicals, the National Council of Churches of Christ in the USA, and Christian Churches Together in the USA are described, together with initiatives which have given rise to the United Church of Christ and to the Church Uniting in Christ. Bilateral dialogues and some of their fruits are considered, as well as many ways in which Christian bodies collaborate more broadly. Continuing issues in the American context are identified and discussed.

Keywords: United States, ecumenism, American, National Council, churches, bilateral, dialogue, Christian Churches Together

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