A new book promoted by the Vatican’s top ecumenist, Cardinal Walter Kasper, urges Christians to start moving the dialogue out of the dusty libraries and into their daily lives.

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Receptive Ecumenism and the Call to Catholic Learning
Exploring a Way for Contemporary Ecumenism

Edited by Paul Murray

source- Oxford University Press


  • Draws on the expertise of an internationally regarded team of authors, representing a diversity of denominational perspectives and disciplinary expertise to give comprehensive and balanced coverage of ideas
  • Includes a foreword and original essay by His Eminence Cardinal Walter Kasper, President of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity.
  • Provides readers with fresh and distinctive perspectives on the ecumenical endeavour in general and contemporary Roman Catholic ecclesiology in particular
    Helpfully structured into five sections with explanatory preface for ease of use

This volume proposes a fresh strategy for ecumenical engagement – ‘Receptive Ecumenism’ – that is fitted to the challenges of the contemporary context and has already been internationally recognised as making a distinctive and important new contribution to ecumenical thought and practice. Beyond this, the volume tests and illustrates this proposal by examining what Roman Catholicism in particular might fruitfully learn from its ecumenical others.

Challenging the tendency for ecumenical studies to ask, whether explicitly or implicitly, ‘What do our others need to learn from us?’, this volume presents a radical challenge to see ecumenism move forward into action by highlighting the opposite question ‘What can we learn with integrity from our others?’

This approach is not simply ecumenism as shared mission, or ecumenism as problem-solving and incremental agreement but ecumenism as a vital long-term programme of individual, communal and structural conversion driven, like the Gospel that inspires it, by the promise of conversion into greater life and flourishing. The aim is for the Christian traditions to become more, not less, than they currently are by learning from, or receiving of, each other’s gifts.

The 32 original essays that have been written for this unique volume explore these issues from a wide variety of denominational and disciplinary perspectives, drawing together ecclesiologists, professional ecumenists, sociologists, psychologists, and organizational experts.

Readership: Scholars and students of Ecumenism and contemporary Roman Catholicism; Clergy and lay readers particularly from within the Roman Catholic tradition but also within other Christian denominations


Donald Bolan, Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, CAN
David M. Chapman, British Methodist-Roman Catholic Committee, UK
Patrick Connolly, University of Limerick, IRL
Eamonn Conway, University of Limerick, IRL
Denis Edwards, Flinders University/Adelaide College of Divinity, AUS
Philip Endean, S. J., University of Oxford, UK
Joseph Famere, Universit Catholique de Louvain, BEL
Gabriel Flynn, Dublin City University, IRL
Jeffrey Gros, F.S.C., formally US Conference of Catholic Bishops, USA
Daniel W. Hardy, formally University of Cambridge, UK
Walter Kasper, Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, DEU
Paul Lakeland, Fairfield University, CT, USA
Riccardo Larini, University of Cambridge, UK
Nicholas Lash, University of Cambridge, UK
Herv Legrand, O.P., formally Institut Catholique, Paris, FRA
Andrew Louth, University of Durham, UK
Gerard Mannion, American Academy of Relgion, USA
Peter McGrail, Liverpool Hope University, UK
Paul McPartlan, Catholic University of America, WA, UK
Paul D. Murray, University of Durham, UK
Margaret O’Gara, St Michael’s College, Toronto, CAN
Ladislas rsy, S.J., Georgetown University, USA
Keith F. Pecklars, S.J., Pontifical Gregorian University, ITA
Peter Phillips, University of Leeds/Ushaw College, Durham, UK
James F. Puglisi, S.A., Pontifical Athenaeum S.Anselmo, ITA
Michael E. Putney, Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, AUS
Thomas J. Reese, S.J., SAnta Clara University, USA
William G. Rusch, Yale Divinity School, USA
Nicholas Sagovsky, formally Liverpool Hope University, UK
Philip Sheldrake, formally University of Durham, UK
Geraldine Smyth, O.P.,Trinity College Dublin, IRE
James Sweeney, C.P., Heythrop College, London, UK
Mary Tanner, OBE, International Anglican-Roman Catholic Commission for Unity and Mission, UK
Brendan Tuohy, Government Department of Communications, Marine and National Resources, IRE