From the Worldwide Faith News archives

UCC, Disciples ecumenical councils discuss COCU, 2001 gathering

From "Office of Communications"<>
Date 12 Apr 2000 13:04:40

Date: April 12, 2000
Disciples News Service
Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
Contact: Clifford L. Willis
on the Web:


	ST. LOUIS (DNS) -- A first-time meeting here of ecumenical bodies from 
the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and the United Church of Christ 
discussed their communions' roles in a new church union proposal and the 
2001 gathering of their plenary bodies.

	Board members of the Disciples Council on Christian Unity and the United 
Church of Christ Council for Ecumenism met April 6-8. While other 
Disciples and UCC administrative units share overseas ministries or 
otherwise work together, this is the first joint meeting of the Council on 
Christian Unity and Council for Ecumenism. 

	It no longer felt right not to be meeting together as partners, said the 
Rev. Robert K. Welsh of the initial meeting of the CCU board and the UCC 
Council for Ecumenism. Welsh is president of the Disciples' Council on 
Christian Unity.

	"We want to begin to do as much together as we can," echoed the Rev. 
Randi Walker, Berkeley, Calif., chairperson of the UCC Council for 

	Both denominations are members of the Consultation on Church Union which, 
upon approval by the nine member communions, will be succeeded by a new 
entity -- Churches Uniting in Christ. 

	With the advent of this new relationship, the churches have finally 
decided to stop consulting and to act, said the Rev. Michael Kinnamon, 
Lexington, Ky., COCU general secretary. "This is a commitment to live 
together as church in a new way," said the Disciples ecumenist. The new 
relationship among the churches is set to begin in 2002. 

	The Disciples CCU and the United Church CFE discussed the possibility of 
a joint resolution endorsing the new unity proposal. The Disciples General 
Assembly and the UCC General Synod will meet jointly in 2001 in Kansas 
City. Board and council members also discussed ideas for celebrating the 
Churches Uniting in Christ proposal liturgically during the 01 common 

	In addition, the agenda included a report on learnings from the process 
that formed the UCC and Disciples Common Global Ministries Board, and 
discussions on interfaith dialogue, a possible resolution backing the COCU 
initiative to combat racism, and support of the World Council of Churches' 
decade-long emphasis on overcoming violence.

	The Disciples of Christ and the Cleveland-based United Church of Christ 
have been "ecumenical partners" since 1989, mutually recognizing members, 
ministers and overseas mission. 

	-- end -- 

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