- 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
- 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
The Middle East is marked by a rich diversity of church traditions. This has historically given rise to divisions, and every search for Christian unity must find a delicate balance between unity and diversity. The Middle East Council of Churches, which includes almost all of the historical churches, is a privileged instrument in this ecumenical endeavour, through its main units on faith and unity, education and renewal, life and service, and its programme on interreligious dialogue. It has met with various difficulties over the years but has recently made a new start. Some bilateral pastoral agreements deserve to be highlighted. Ecumenical relations are also conditioned by political instability in the region, which differs from country to country. Christians in the region have a strong awareness of belonging together, facing the same challenges, and being called to work together for their future. An ecumenism of martyrdom has become part of life.
Frans Bouwen is a member of the Society of Missionaries of Africa (White Fathers), living in Jerusalem since 1969. From 1983-2013, he was a member of the Faith and Order Commission of the WCC. He is a member of the international commissions for theological dialogue between the Roman Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church and between the Catholic and the Oriental Orthodox Churches.
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