LWF thanks Anglicans for witnessing together in a fragmented world

The congregation at St John's Cathedral, Hong Kong, for the official opening of ACC-17. Photo: ACNS
The congregation at St John's Cathedral, Hong Kong, for the official opening of ACC-17. Photo: ACNS

LWF greetings to Anglican Consultative Council

(LWI) - The Lutheran World Federation (LWF) has expressed its gratitude to the Anglican Communion for its strong witness in an increasingly divided world and for the mutually beneficial relationships between Anglicans and Lutherans.

Representing the Lutheran communion at the 17th meeting of the Anglican Consultative Council (ACC) in Hong Kong, 28 April-5 May, Oberkirchenrat Dr Oliver Schuegraf said, “In times of fragmentation and polarization […] your meeting is a powerful testimony that God is indeed alive, transforming you to live into those relationships which are never our property, but always and only God’s gift.”

In times of fragmentation and polarization […] your meeting is a powerful testimony that God is indeed alive, transforming you to live into those relationships which are never our property, but always and only God’s gift.
LWF representative Oberkirchenrat Dr Oliver Schuegraf, addressing the 17th Anglican Consultative Council meeting

The LWF also thanked Anglicans for making the 2017 commemorations of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation an ecumenical celebration. “We are very grateful to the Anglican Communion because you joined us in many ways and supported us to uphold this ecumenical approach,” said Schuegraf, who is the church executive for ecumenical and theological studies at the German National Committee of the LWF.

He referred to the worship service at Westminster Abbey in London, which was one of the highlights of the Reformation celebrations. During the 31 October event,  the Archbishop of Canterbury solemnly handed over the ACC’s affirmation of the Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification to leaders of the LWF and the Roman Catholic Church.

“The central insight of this doctrine is that in Christ God’s grace is given to us as a free and unconditional gift, evoking a response of gratitude and expressing itself in loving and caring engagement with human beings and the whole of creation,” Schuegraf noted.

That message remains timely in a world that seems to be running out of grace, he said, adding that the LWF looks forward to cooperating with Anglicans in bringing this vital message to the world.

Referring to the joint publication, Liberated by God’s Grace: Anglican–Lutheran Reflections on the LWF theme for the Reformation anniversary, he noted it had become an  important resource for churches in both traditions.

Schuegraf emphasized LWF’s gratitude for the new phase of the Anglican-Lutheran International Commission on Unity and Mission, through which bishops and other church leaders in different regions around the world will seek ways to increase cooperation in their witness together.

“We, as Lutherans, are grateful for the ecumenical journey we have been able to walk along with you,” he concluded.

 

Lutheran-Anglican Dialogue

 

Oberkirchenrat Dr Oliver Schuegraf brings LWF’s greetings to the 17th meeting of the Anglican Consultative Council in Hong Kong.