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Ecumenical Symposium: Truth Does Not Fear Dialogue

Toward a Common Future

“Truth,” Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I wrote in an Encyclical for the Sunday of Orthodoxy 2010, “does not fear dialogue.” The Encyclical articulated the vibrant relationship between Orthodoxy and a world filled with living, breathing cultures and peoples.

This symposium explores the ways in which the Holy Spirit is active within this long and dynamic dialogue. Drawing on the lived experience of Orthodox, Roman Catholic, Lutheran and Pentecostal churches similarities as well as differences will be named and respected with the understanding that these churches — with their various histories and contexts — have grown variously in the same Spirit.

An enduring struggle among cultures and peoples is how to respond to differences. Need they be dividing? Need they induce suspicion? Need they lead to condemnation?

This symposium will highlight several approaches to difference that have emerged in dialogues between pairs of these churches, and consider possible application in other contexts. From the “differentiated consensus” that led the Roman Catholic Church and the Lutheran World Federation to address the central theological issue of the Reformation to the emerging idea of “differentiated participation,” participants will not only learn about these tools but have the opportunity to engage with ecumenical leaders who are presently seeking to apply them.  

Hosted by Saint Peter’s Church

with the
Archdiocese of New York
Franciscan Friars of the Atonement
The Grace Foundation
Metropolitan New York Synod, ELCA
Yale Divinity School

Keynote Address
His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros of America
Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America

Recently appointed by Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I as Archbishop of America, His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros is a scholar and practitioner of ecumenical theology. He served for many years as the Secretary of the International Lutheran-Orthodox Dialogue and in 2009 completed two dissertations for the prestigious Theological School of Thessaloniki: “The Synaxis’s of the Hierarchy of the Ecumenical Throne (1951-2004)” and “Luther’s Ninety-five Thesis. Historical and Theological aspects. Text - Translation – Commentary.”

Wednesday, November 13
6:00 pm – Reception
6:30 pm – 8:00 pm – Keynote by His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros of America
Response offered by Roman Catholic Bishop TBA* and Lutheran Bishop Paul Egensteiner
8:00 pm – 8:45 pm – Compline

Thursday 14 November
10:30 am – 12:00 noon – Lecture: Methodology
12:00 noon – 1:30 pm – Lunch
1:30 – 2:15 – Differentiated Consensus in the Dialogues: Lutheran-Orthodox
2:15 – 3:00 – Differentiated Consensus in the Dialogues: Roman Catholic – Pentecostal
3:00 – 3:30 – Concluding Remarks and sending prayer

Earlier Event: October 6
Jazz Vespers: October 2019
Later Event: November 14
Meditative Motions by Chellis Baird