At the recent South Australian Council of Churches Annual General Meeting, there was quite a bit said about ‘receptive ecumenism’.
Receptive ecumenism is not so much a program as an attitude toward other churches, which may or may not lead to activities.
Receptive ecumenism is asking ‘what can I receive from the Catholic Church, or Pentecostal or Uniting Church, which will help me be more fully a servant of Christ in my Lutheran Church?’ It may be the other church’s energy, or spirit of cooperation, or generous spirit that seeks to always put people first, or even a way of reading the Bible that can teach us new things.
The things we discover in other churches may be obvious, or they might be a mystery to be encountered over a long time. A right attitude to other churches means we are always open to surprise.
Let us pray a ‘receptive ecumenical’ prayer. ‘Lord Jesus, move my heart and my mind to receive what you want to share with me, from my brothers and sisters in other churches. And make me generous to share my gift too, so that the body of Christ may be richer and healthier in my town, community or suburb. Amen.’
Your South Australian Council of Churches Lutheran representatives for the coming year are Mr Gilbert Materne, Pastor Leon Rosenberg, Pastor Ian Lutze and Bishop David Altus.
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