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date: 31 October 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Quakers, whose religion was formed ‘overagainst’ rituals and practices of the Church of England in the seventeenth century, have subsequently fashioned varying styles of relationships with other churches and religions in the regions of the world to which Quakerism has spread. Key in shaping a Quaker contribution to ecumenism was Hicksite and Orthodox Quakers’ participation in the World Parliament of Religions in 1893. Several Quaker groups subsequently joined the World Council of Churches (WCC), although each with slightly varying objections to creedalism, or what Quakers have called ‘outward sacraments’. Quaker interest in interfaith relationships with non-Christians has grown in the early twenty-first century. Theologically, Quakers have left behind the assertions of their seventeenth-century forebears that other Christians were apostate, and may well be moving towards a ‘receptive ecumenism’ in which they recognize that all churches and religions have spiritual gifts to contribute to the world.

Keywords: World Parliament of Religion, World Council of Churches, ecumenism, interfaith relations, non-creedalism, sacraments, priesthood of all believers

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