CPCE publishes Protestant-Orthodox Dialogue on Baptism

“Baptism in the Life of the Church” in Lembeck-Verlag documents the dialogue on baptism between CPCE, the Community of Protestant Churches in Europe, and the orthodox churches in CEC, the Conference of European Churches, and encourages its mutual recognit

Baptism is of central significance for the life of the church. Agreement exists on its nature between the protestant and orthodox traditions in Europe. The diversity of the liturgical forms is not church-divisive. It can rather be enriching.

This conclusion was reached by a consultation between CEC, the Conference of European Churches, and CPCE, the Community of Proestant Churches in Europe, in November 2008 in Vienna. The results of the conference have now appeared as volume 12 of the CPCE publications series “Leuenberg Texts” in Lembeck-Verlag (Frankfurt am Main).

The Vienna consultation was preceded by corresponding conferences in 2002 in Chania, 2004 in Wittenberg and 2006 in Istanbul. In Vienna the churches were encouraged to the mutual recognition of baptism. The editors of the volume “Baptism in the Life of the Church” hope that the result of the consultation process will find the attention it deserves among the churches and ecumenical partners and lead to conversations on national level. Wherever churches concur in agreements on the mutual recognition of baptism they take a significant ecumenical step and witness to their bond in Christ.

In the volume now presented Michael Beintker (Münster) and Viorel Ionita (Geneva) first of all document the results of the protestant-orthodox dialogue up till now. Then Metropolitan Gennadios of Sassima and Nicolae Mosoiu (Bucharest) explain the orthodox understanding of baptism as well as its ecclesiological and ecumenical significance. On the protestant side Friederike Nüssel (Heidelberg) reports on baptism and baptismal order in the life of the protestant church and Martin Wallraff (Basle) on impulses from the theology of the church fathers for the protestant understanding of baptism.

Note: The volume “Baptism in the Life of the Church. Documentation of an orthodox-protestant Dialogue in Europe” has appeared as Leuenberg Text 12 in Lembeck-Verlag (Frankfurt am Main). It can be ordered through booksellers or from Lembeck-Verlag under www.lembeck.de. ISBN 978-3-87476-638-8, 300 pages, paperback, € 14,80.

Vienna, 12th April 2011

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Zur Gemeinschaft Evangelischer Kirchen in Europa (GEKE) – Leuenberger Kirchengemeinschaft haben sich 105 protestantische Kirchen in Europa (und in Südamerika) zusammen geschlossen. Lutherische, reformierte, unierte, methodistische und vorreformatorische Kirchen gewähren einander durch ihre Zustimmung zur Leuenberger Konkordie von 1973 Kanzel- und Abendmahlsgemeinschaft. Die Anschrift lautet: GEKE-Geschäftsstelle, Severin-Schreiber-Gasse 3, A-1180 Wien, Tel.: +43.1.4791523.900, Telefax: +43.1.4791523.580, Email: office@leuenberg.eu, Internet: www.leuenberg.eu. Pressekontakt: Dipl. theol. Thomas Flügge (Bern), Tel. +41.31.37025.02, Fax .80, Mobil: +41.79.6401902, Email: t.fluegge@leuenberg.eu.

Picture: CC/Joost J. Bakker

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