Week of Prayer for Christian Unity 2010
Inaugurated in 1908 at the initiative of Rev. Paul Wattson, an Episcopalian priest of the United States who would later join the Catholic Church, the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity is celebrated all around the world.
The Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, in collaboration with the World Council of Churches, has offered a resource for celebrating the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity that includes readings and prayers for each of the eight days of the week inspired by the theme, “You are witnesses of these things” (Luke 24:48).
This year’s theme was chosen by the Churches of Scotland to mark the hundredth anniversary of the 1910 Edinburgh Mission Conference on the theme “Witnessing to Christ Today”, an event largely hailed as the origin of modern ecumenism. “Divisions between Christians,” the gathered missionaries had noted, “not only weaken missionary effectiveness, but the Church and body of Christ and its mission.”
During the 2010 Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, the faithful of the Universal Church are instructed by the resource guide to revisit the Mission Conference’s theme and to reflect on the “appreciation of the resurrection of Christ as the source of ecclesial communion, of being sent out in mission, of the intrinsic link between mission and unity and, therefore, of the continual need to renew our commitment to Christian unity.”
The faithful are also invited to pray for unity among Christians during the course of the Week and year round.
We had an opportunity to join the Saint Paul University community at a special ecumenical prayer service held on January 20 in the Saint Paul University chapel in Lamframboise Hall. Our rector represented the Ukrainian Catholic community, while Rev. Fr. Lieutenant-Colonel Terry Cherwick, a Ukrainian Catholic priest of the Archeparchy of Winnipeg, represented the Canadian Military.