Circle of Faith Blog

Welcome!

This blog is about Christian Science in Christian dialogue and community.

The technical term is ‘ecumenical dialogue.’ The Mother Church as well as local communities are in various stages of formal dialogue with Christian councils and organizations around the world. This blog is an open, transparent discussion about these relationships.We encourage you to enter the conversation by contributing your own comments after the blog postings. The Ecumenical Team of bloggers include Shirley Paulson (Committee for Ecumenical Affairs), Janet Horton, Madelon Maupin, Brian Talcott, and Maryl Walters.

For some, attending ecumenical events is all very new, and at first one friend wanted to hang out only with fellow church members.  Then someone gently suggested he join others’ tables to potentially build new bridges of communication, which he did. 

Four Christian Scientists journeyed to Washington DC last week for the Christian Unity Gathering (CUG)—the annual meeting of the National Council of Churches (NCC). It was warm and welcoming from the very first moment.

Months ago, I stumbled across a “Call for Papers” for a conference called “The Evolution of Christian Science in Scholarly Perspective” in Belgium on April 23-24.  Realizing I would already be in Europe, I could go, wondering what a scholarly perspective meant and why it was important.  

213. Is a love of Jesus enough to bind Christians?

The question I had going to the National Workshop on Christian Unity in Charlotte last week was ‘why isn’t a love of Jesus enough to bind this group?’  When I asked people what they loved about Jesus, most often they were startled. But I think there’s a promise of us being so alive with Christliness that it binds us with Christians beyond our borders.

212 Ecumenical Advocacy Days--we were embraced

Fifteen enthusiastic Christian Scientists from around the U.S., who have spent years helping those in prison, just participated in the Ecumenical Advocacy Days. Another 1,000 Christian advocates (joined them) and were fired up for justice in the light of the difficult issues and injustices in domestic U.S. and international criminal and immigrant detention systems at the 13th Annual National Gathering of Ecumenical Advocacy Days (EAD) for Global Peace with Justice. 

211. Those fun, God-loving ministers!

This past week I enjoyed meeting with three Protestant pastors who are part of a Ministerial Alliance in a farming community in the Midwest. A Christian Scientist is part of this Alliance and invited me to join this group at one of their monthly meetings.

210. Working through theological differences

In a recent conversation about baptism with some Christian minister friends, they were rather stunned to find out I had not been formally baptized in a water immersion ceremony. But I realized once again that the only reason they were even listening was because we had built a mutual relationship of respect.

209. Easter: the great ecumenical joy

 At the heart of the Christian message for the world is the cry, ‘He is risen!’ Centuries before there were church doctrines and Easter traditions, Christianity was a ‘resurrection’ movement. Far greater than the nuances of interpretations that came later for the Christian church, this is the part that draws Christians together.

Notice: You are welcome at CUG May 7-8, 2015!

The annual Christian Unity Gathering of the National Council of Churches (USA) welcomes anyone interested in ecumenical ministry to listen and participate.  This year, the meeting is May 7-8, at the Hilton Washington Dulles.

208. My love for the Bible just kept growing

I stood in front of a table displaying several books on Jesus as a historical figure that I had never seen before. These really interested me, although as a Christian Scientist I wondered whether it was really ok to be interested in and read these books, since they didn’t come from any Christian Science source.