The University of St. Thomas

Center for Catholic Studies | Programs

Ecumenical Vision

Ecumenical Vision

The Program's Comprehensive Ecumenical Vision

The Program is committed to the pursuit of Christian unity across the following seven dimensions of dialogue:

1.  Theological: clarification of doctrinal agreement and disagreement.

Formal and informal discussions among scholars and church leaders in the context of international and national consultations leading to the promulgation and publication of joint statements.
Program's contribution: Public Lectures; Conferences; Official Documents

2.  Historical: "Healing of Memory" project.

Study of our shared past in order to understand the causes of divisions and to work towards reconciliation, among other things, through comparative investigation of representative figures (theologians, saints, martyrs, mystics), periods, issues, and practices.
Program's contribution: Publications

3.  Practical: faith-sharing among Catholics and Orthodox in everyday life.

Reflections on the ways in which social context shapes Catholic and Orthodox identity of individuals and communities across the globe (e.g., Orthodox-Catholic intermarriages in the US, Orthodox and Catholic minorities in the Middle East).
Program's contribution: Twin Cities Initiatives

4.  Liturgical: participation in joint prayer services.

Scholarly investigation of conditions for reestablishing communio in sacris; Orthodox studies of western worship; Catholic studies of eastern worship.
Program's contribution: Twin Cities Initiatives

5.  Social: common response to the modern world.

Articulating a common moral vision in light of the major social, economic, and political challenges of the day (globalization, war and peace, science and technology, poverty, and so on).
Program's contribution: Projects in Ukraine

6.  Global: nurturing an ecumenical spirit around the world.

Fostering awareness of the need for Church unity in Orthodox and Catholic institutions in North America and Eastern Europe (e.g., western tour groups visiting Orthodox churches in the former Soviet Union).
Program's contribution: Faculty Exchange; Study Abroad; Public Lectures

7.  Aesthetic: contemplating the beauty of the divine together.

The study of western influences upon eastern Christian art, music, and architecture, and vice versa. Creation of new Christian art and music bearing testimony to Orthodox-Catholic unity.
Program's contribution: Annual Icon Festivals; Icon Art Studios