Three Ecumenical Guidelines

A Faith Manifesto by Peter DeHaanEcumenical is a word some may be unfamiliar with.

One definition of ecumenical means “relating to the worldwide Christian church.” A broader understanding is “establishing and promoting unity among religions.” More generically, ecumenical simply means “worldwide; universal.”

In simple terms, I understand ecumenical to mean unifying.

Towards this goal, three ecumenical — that is, unifying — guidelines advance our understanding:

“In essentials, unity;
in non-essentials, liberty;
in all things charity.”

Though the author of this brilliant advice is in debate, its wisdom is not.

May our list of essentials be short, our non-essentials held loosely, and our mercy and tolerance without limit.

[This quote is often attributed to Augustine, but cannot be confirmed. John Amos Comenious advocated this in the 1600s and he may have been citing Peter Meiderlin.]

[Read more about this in Peter DeHaan’s e-book A Faith Manifesto: A Christian Perspective on Unity and Acceptance.]