That they all may be one: Insights into English ecumenism

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The ecumenical movement in England has been on a significant journey over the past few decades. The number of Churches and denominations engaged in the area has grown remarkably, reflecting shifting trends in English Christianity. That, combined with major changes in the ecumenical bodies, and changing perceptions of ecumenism among Churches, has given rise to a complex and vibrant ecumenical scene.

This report provides a snapshot of contemporary ecumenism in England. It tells the story of how ecumenism has changed and describes a movement that is now sitting at a critical juncture as it looks to the future. The report focuses primarily on Churches Together in England, the main ecumenical body operating in England. It identifies the strengths of the organisation and discusses the challenges it now faces.

The report concludes with some suggested possibilities for the future, making some tentative recommendations for Churches Together in England as an organisation. It is our hope that this report will serve to provoke fresh debate about the purpose, focus, and direction of ecumenism as it develops over the coming years.

Natan Mladin, Rachel Fidler, and Ben Ryan, Theos 2017

We are grateful to Theos for its work in compiling this Report. We hope that, with widespread study and discussion, it will help us grow closer to each other in our shared pathways of discipleship and in the mission we hold in common.

The Presidents of Churches Together in England

Archbishop Justin Welby
The Archbishop of Canterbury
Cardinal Vincent Nichols
The Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster
Revd Dr Hugh Osgood
The Free Churches Moderator
The Revd Canon Billy Kennedy
The President nominated by the New Churches, the Religious Society of Friends (the Quakers) and the Lutheran and German-speaking Churches
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