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Ecumenism and Inter-religious Relations

Evangelisation Brisbane seeks to support ecumenical efforts and inter-religious relations. We do so by supporting the Executive Officer of the Archdiocesan Council for Ecumenism and Inter-religious Relations.

The Council for Ecumenism and Inter-religious Relations as part of the Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane, is called to proclaim the gospel of Christ and the teachings of the Catholic Church by holding the essential nature of ecumenism and inter-religious relations before the local church in the Archdiocese through prayer, communication and education.

If you would like to speak to someone further about ecumenism or inter-religious relations, please contact us. We would love to hear from you

What is ecumenism and why is it important?

Ecumenism seeks to bring Christians together to love one another as God loves us and so to proclaim the Gospel.

Jesus said “I ask not only on behalf of these, but also on behalf of those who will believe in me through their word, that they may all be one. As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they also be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me.” (John 17:20-21)

Jesus prayed that all his followers, all Christians, would be one. The divisions and disputes between Christians through the centuries have shattered this unity. Ecumenism seeks to bring Christians together to love one another as God loves us and so to proclaim the Gospel.

The Catholic Church is totally committed to this ecumenical journey.

The restoration of unity among all Christians is one of the principal concerns of the Second Vatican Council. Christ the Lord founded one church and one church only. (Second Vatican Council: Decree on Ecumenism, Unitatis Redintegratio, 21 November 1964 #1)

What are inter-religious relations and why are they important?

A meeting of people of differing religions in an atmosphere of mutual respect, freedom and openness in order to listen to the other, to try to understand that person’s religion, and hopefully to seek possibilities of collaboration.

The terms Inter-religious or Interfaith are used quite frequently these days and refer to the dialogues and shared activities that happen between members of the world’s great faith traditions such as:

  • Buddhism
  • Christianity
  • Hinduism
  • Islam
  • Judaism

For the sake of world peace, it is becoming increasingly more important that these dialogues take place.

The Catholic Church recognises the importance of this dialogue.

The Catholic Church rejects nothing of what is true and holy in these religions. It has a high regard for the manner of life and conduct, the precepts and doctrines which, although differing in many ways from its own teaching, nevertheless often reflect a ray of that truth which enlightens all men and women… The church, therefore, urges its sons and daughters to enter with prudence and charity into discussion and collaboration with members of other religions.

(Second Vatican Council: Declaration on the Relation of the Church to Non-Christian Religions, Nostra Aetate, 28 October 1965 #2)