Ecumenism, Christian Origins and the Practice of Communion

Front Cover
Cambridge University Press, 2000 M05 4 - 221 pages
The theology of communion, or Koinonia, has been at the centre of the ecumenical movement for more than thirty years. It is central to the self-understanding of the Anglican, Roman Catholic and Orthodox Churches, and has been prominent in the work of the World Council of Churches. This book, based on the 1996 Hulsean Lectures, examines the significance of Koinonia for contemporary ecumenical theology, tracing the development of contemporary understanding in critical engagement with the thoughts of Plato, Aristotle, the Hebrew Scriptures, the New Testament, the Cappadocian Fathers and Augustine. In each case, reflection on community life is related to actual communities in which texts were produced. The importance of conflict and the place of politics for the Koinonia that constitutes the Christian churches is a major theme throughout. Communion is seen as a gift to be received and a discipline to be cultivated in the continuing practice of ecumenism.
 

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Contents

CHAPTER 1 The common life
1
Anglicans Roman Catholics and ecumenical consensus
18
CHAPTER 3 Platos vision
48
CHAPTER 4 Aristotles revisionism
72
CHAPTER 5 Covenant and community
97
CHAPTER 6 Little communities and the Catholic church
116
CHAPTER 7 Cappadocian koinonia
146
CHAPTER 8 Augustine and the story of communion
171
CHAPTER 9 Ecumenism and the practice of communion
194
Select bibliography
209
Index
218
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