We, the members of the Consultation meeting in Paris 17-19 February 2004, affirm the joint statement of our bishops (the ‘Paris Statement’ of February 2003), as fundamental to our understanding of our common task. We are grateful for all the work done in the previous meetings of the Consultation to 2000, and the European Partners in Mission of 2001-2003.
The Consultation reflected on the corpus of work done to date; noted the differing geographical extent, and the local linguistic and cultural contexts in which our jurisdictions minister; and reaffirmed our commitments to Churches in communion and ecumenical partners. We consider that the conditions for forming new and appropriate provincial structures are not yet ripe, but rather that the way forward lies first in deepening and developing our relationships and partnerships at local, regional and continental levels. We encourage our bishops to continue to meet regularly in the exercise of their collegial ministry. Moreover, we urge the formation of networks, chiefly at local levels, in order to foster the sharing of resources and gifts, collaboration in meeting common needs, and partnerships to strengthen the mission and ministry of the Church. We believe that closer collaboration between congregations and jurisdictions will enable substantial progress in such areas as theological education, youth work, and social outreach. Praying regularly for each other and creating occasions for joint worship are crucial to our growth in common mission and ministry. To achieve all this, improved communications at every level are vital.
We further recommend that this Consultation continue to meet regularly at the bishops’ invitation in order to stimulate and foster these local and regional partnerships and programmes, to monitor progress made, and to encourage further growth and development.
We ask the appropriate authorities in our several jurisdictions to commit themselves anew to embracing our common future, as the Holy Spirit continues to show us the way forward in meeting the urgent task of the Church’s mission in Continental Europe so that the glory of Jesus Christ may be revealed.
History and Members
The Paris Statement and the
Main report of the European Partners in Mission
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