There were friendly relations with Evangelical-Reformed and Lutheran churches even at the time of the formation of the Utrecht Union, relations which have deepened over time. This occurred not least of all within the framework of the ecumenical movement.
In many places there is intensive, practical cooperation, combined with a corresponding theological exchange of ideas. Up to the present day, however, there has not been a comprehensive Old Catholic dialogue at the level of the Utrecht Union, although such a dialogue with the Lutheran World Federation has been called for in recent years. The questions, which need to be addressed in dialogue, have to do primarily with the understanding of the church, its unity and ministry, the doctrine of the sacraments and the understanding of redemption (International Bishops’ Conference Declaration, 1993).
In this regard Old Catholic churches follow with interest the developments in Anglican-Lutheran relations, as they have come to expression in the Porvoo Common Statement of 1992 or in Called to Common Mission of 2000.
In 2004 the Old Catholic Churches of the Utrecht Union began preliminary theological conversations with the Lutheran Church of Sweden, which led to an official dialogue between both churches in 2006.
Translator: The Reverend Daniel G. Conklin
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