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Published by: Jody+ on Sep 28, 2010
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The Church of the Triune God
The Cyprus Agreed Statement
of the
International Commission for Anglican - Orthodox Theological Dialogue
 
2006
Preface by the Co-Chairmen
The release of the 1984
 Dublin Agreed Statement 
which concluded with an ‘Epilogue’summarizing agreements and disagreements as well as points for further study, markedthe completion of the second in the current series of theological conversations betweenAnglicans and the Orthodox. It was noted at the time that the work so far, whileimpressive in both quantity and quality, appeared to lack a central focus and that the timehad come for the commission to organize its work more systematically. The LambethConference of 1988 passed a resolution on ‘Anglican/Orthodox Relations’ which“encouraged the work of the Commission towards the restoration of that unity for whichChrist prayed, particularly noting its intention to address the question of ecclesiologywhich it is hoped will include the increasingly significant concept of ‘reception’, the issueof ecclesial diversity and the inter-relationship between faith and culture in which it isexpressed, believing that these are pressing issues which affect both our Communions…”(Resolution 6.4).The new Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, in his 1991 enthronement address,expressed esteem for the Archbishop of Canterbury and the entire Anglican Communion.He also voiced his intention “to continue with faithfulness the long tradition of fraternalrelations with the Anglican Church…and [his] desire to promote our theological dialogueuntil we achieve the unity of faith”.Five years were to pass between plenary sessions of the Anglican – Orthodox JointDoctrinal Discussion. During this period the Commission was re-constituted, reduced insize and given a new Orthodox as well as a new Anglican co-chairman. At its firstmeeting at the New Valamo Monastery in Finland in June of 1989, a new plan of studywas presented. The proposal was to begin with a consideration of ‘the Mystery of theChurch in the light of our faith in the Trinitarian God’, then move on to explore the‘Mystery of the Church in relation to Christology, Pneumatology and Anthropology’. Next the Commission should study some specific ecclesiological matters such as whatconstitutes heresy and schism and the question of reception in the Church. A third set of questions relate to church structure and order and includes the nature and authority of theepiscopal ministry.The results of the Commission’s deliberations are made available here in the hope thatAnglicans and Orthodox will come to appreciate the things they have in common and to
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understand the nature of their disagreements. Membership of the Commission has beenan enriching experience both personally and theologically. As one Commission member  put it, “Now it is a conversation of delight and illumination. Like all true conversations, ithas had its moments of surprise and strangeness…But then it is good to be drawn into aconversation which engages in profound and sustained reflection on what it is that makesthe Church the Church and to affirm the hidden life of the Trinity at the heart of our communities”.This report represents the fruit of the Commission’s work and carries only the authorityof its members, but it is offered to the Anglican and Orthodox churches in the hope that,as it is studied and reflected upon, it will help Christians of both traditions to perceiveanew the work of the Triune God in giving life to His Church, and draw us closer to thatunity which is His will for all the faithful.
Mark Dyer 
John of PergamonLondonDecember 2006
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Introduction
The publication of this Cyprus Agreed Statement concludes the third phase of theAnglican-Orthodox international theological dialogue. The dialogue began in 1973, whenthe Anglican-Orthodox Joint Doctrinal Discussions (A/OJDD) held its first meeting inOxford. The first phase of the dialogue was concluded by the publication of the MoscowAgreed Statement in 1976. The publication of the Dublin Agreed Statement in 1984 brought its second phase to a conclusion. Both statements recorded a measure of agreement on a range of specific topics, while acknowledging continuing divergence onothers. The third phase of the dialogue began in 1989, when the commission was re-constituted as The International Commission for the Anglican-Orthodox TheologicalDialogue (ICAOTD). Its task has been to consider the doctrine of the Church in the lightof the doctrine of the Trinity, and to examine the doctrine of the ordained ministry of theChurch. Particular attention has been given to the question of who may be ordained to the presbyterate and episcopate. This third phase of the dialogue has given further consideration to ecclesiological issues discussed in earlier phases, and to aspects of Trinitarian doctrine. The Cyprus Agreed Statement, like its two predecessors, registersconsiderable agreement over a range of issues, while leaving the question of theordination of women unresolved.
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