Ecumenism is a Greek word that means the whole world inhibited. Ecumenicity that is true lies in a unity that is spiritual which is in existence in a basis of indwelling of the Holy Spirit that is mutual, among all of the believers around the world. Far from that, now what is prevailing is false ecumenism, which is found on a basis of faith which is very limited. False ecumenism began pervading the church and has caused too much confusion in the church that was more than a century ago. This is owing to the fact that ecumenism has now undertaken a different meaning to which was in the manuscripts that existed originally.
Within the historical growth of the ecumenical movement, there were ideologies in the development of the ecumenical thinking. They were divided into three different phases. In the first phase, the Ecumenical movement made great emphasis to the church in terms of brotherhood that was universal. As it was the desire of Christ to unite all Christians from around the world, their ideologies turned out different in the 20th century. Just at the centurys turn, there were a quite a number of competing interests and thus came to a conclusion that was understandable that a spirit that was sectarian was detrimental to the worlds faith witnessing. This was the fountainhead of the movement. This ideology was an idea that did not wear out as the organizers failed when it came to the reckoning with liberalism of denomination and some other forces that would actually mold that work in a creature that is rather different (Shelly, 1995).
That first deviation from the first phase which seemed ideal involved a movement which was far away from Denomination of Christian unity. The second phase involved the boundary widening where apart from Christianity other faiths could be included. This was based on a false yet great assumption that every religion has a different expression yet with the same principle which is divine. It brought a development as the international Christian work is increasing the Ecumenical Movement syncretistic ally. Ecumenism has now changed its meaning and now involves a new concept which is known as the integrity and unity of all creation. The whole ideology of Children of God now transformed into the brotherhood of man which bonds us in the flesh rather than the ideology of bonding us to Christ (Noll, 2012).
At the dawn of the century, the ecumenical leaders of the world had great hopes and major expectations in regard to the ideologies that they had earlier on. There was an ideology, a prediction that the twentieth century would be at that age when the Kingdom of God will be fully established in the entire world. The expectations were not fulfilled as they were earlier on expected; the century has still been termed as the century of ecumenism because of the structures in Christian unity that is very advanced. In comparison with all the other centuries in the past, the twentieth century had produced ecumenism in extreme levels. The seeds that are evident in the twentieth century ecumenism had been sown in the late eighteenth century. During the particular time, there was an interest which was growing towards the achievement of unity for the purpose that had been alleged of creation of an earthly utopia. Even though the earliest creation was a continuation benign of the nineteenth century pax, most of the differences in the doctrines between the traditions of Christians have been the subject of many dialogues during this specific age (Shelly, 1995).
The twentieth century experienced ecumenism flowering. The four different strands cooperation in world vision, the international Christian movement, Faith and Order and, Life and Work which were developed in the earlier decade, with different emphasis that were distinctive, later on converged to form a single ecumenical movement. In the twentieth century, churches with similar thinking and missionary activities came together to a platform that was common to all of them. Most visionaries that had the same likes in mind came together and gave expressions on their willingness to working together. This paved way for the ecumenical movement among very many churches which had different ideologies (Noll, 2012).
In the twentieth century there was ecumenical growth that was rampant.. As a result of that, there was an origin of many movements in the local, national and international level. For instance there was the development of the Indian National Council of Churches. Similarly, in many countries, National councils were formulated. As if that is not enough, many organizations that were ecumenical were formulated even on basis that were regional. In addition to that, many forums that ecumenical are doing major and numerous activities that are termed to be charitable The Churchs Auxiliary for Social Action work tirelessly for those who are deprived in the society and even concentrate as a great leader who majors in peoples rehabilitation who have been victims of calamities. These activities that take place are as a result of the vision which had been originated via the Christian spirit that was ecumenical of the twentieth century (Shelly, 2012).
In the earlier centuries, guidelines and inspirations had been given by social reforms and ecumenicists through the speeches that they made an example being that responsibilities which are social should not be forgotten. It is a fact that is noticeable that the ideologies and vision of ecumenism has now been spread out be a model through which various believers of religion and even other people of various ideas which are conflicting. There has been diversification in the ecumenical relations among many groups, religions and people. Though, through bilateral dialogue to promote unity, the major differences between churches was clarified though where there was great disagreement, they were highlighted and thus strengthened the self-conscious of identities that are confessional (Shelly, 1995).
That development is subtle. Instead of the Ecumenical movement and Christians taking the Christian Gospel with the exclusive message into the world that is inhibited and endure the natural cause of antagonism and difficulty, the movement is now giving teachings that God indwells unconditionally, in each and every person despite his or her affiliations into religion. Christianity though, on the other hand interacted hand in hand with them Since they were movements that were promoting Christianity, it was important that the religion was involved in each and every activity of the ecumenical movement. During the many activities, Christianity was always involved and pushed for ecumenism. It is through this that other religions were involved to be part of peace and unity. The evangelicals were very important towards the ecumenical movement and in the supporting agenda of Christianity (Noll 2012).
Noll, M. A. (2012). Turning points: Decisive moments in the history of Christianity. Grand Rapids, Mich: Baker Academic.Shelley, B. L. (1995). Church history in plain language. Dallas, Tex: Word Pub.
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