This article explains the history of the research and dialogue that have paved the way to composing the document From Conflict to Communion, with which the Catholic-Lutheran International Commission for Unity has laid the groundwork for a joint commemoration of the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation. In the spirit of the Second Vatican Council, which asks Catholics to recognize with joy the Christian values and views they share with their brothers and sisters of other churches (see Unitatis redintegratio 4), in 2017 Catholics and Lutherans are invited to commemorate important aspects of the Protestant Reformation that belong to a common Christian heritage. Mindful of the church’s division in the sixteenth century, a commemoration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation is for both sides an invitation to welcome the new steps toward mutual understanding, respect, and even agreement. It is also a time for conversion and a mutual confession of sins that relate to those religious and political leaders, including princes, the emperor, the French king, and even Ottomans, who created the misunderstanding and division that led to the splitting of the Western church. Above all, as suggested by the “Five Ecumenical Imperatives” with which the document concludes, Catholics and Lutherans are called to be inspired in thought and action from a perspective of unity, not division, and to witness gospel life together.
"From Conflict to Communion: Introducing the Document of the International Catholic-Lutheran Commission for Unity in Commemoration of the Reformation in 2017,"
Claritas: Journal of Dialogue and Culture: Vol. 5
, Article 5.
Available at: http://docs.lib.purdue.edu/claritas/vol5/iss2/5