Anglican and Roman Catholic Bishops in Canada Celebrate 25 Years of Dialogue

Monday, November 20 2000

(Ottawa — CCCB) The Anglican/Roman Catholic Bishops’ Dialogue of Canada marks its 25th anniversary this week when it meets in Ottawa for its annual meeting.   The meeting brings nine bishops from each church together once a year to discuss a number of practical as well as theological issues.

Membership on the Dialogue rotates on a regular basis among the bishops of the two faith communities to ensure the presence of both new and continuing participants at each dialogue.  The meetings, which are two to three days in length, allow time for prayer, opportunities to develop or renew friendships, and to grow in spiritual communion.

Over the past few years, topics for discussion have included: interchurch and interfaith marriages, approaches to lay ministry, clergy formation, aspects of native spirituality, the Gospel and inculturation.

The Dialogue’s Pastoral Guidelines for Interchurch Marriages between Anglicans and Roman Catholics in Canada was published in 1987.  A text on Pastoral Guidelines in the Case of Clergy Moving from One Communion to Another was completed in 1991. In 1995, the bishops issued a pastoral message to encourage ecumenical involvement and cooperation. Revised and re-issued in 1996, this message highlights the “real but imperfect” communion already shared and stresses the importance of engaging in common projects at a local level.

The 25th anniversary will be marked with the celebration of Anglican Evensong at Ottawa’s Notre Dame Cathedral on Thursday, November 23, 2000.  The service will begin at 5:30 p.m. with music provided by the Anglican Cathedral choir. The public is welcome!