ARCIC-II Communiqué (Palazzola, 1998)

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Anglican-Roman Catholic International Commission II. ARCIC-II Communiqué (Palazzola, 1998), ARCIC-II 419 (3 Sept. 1998).

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The Anglican-Roman Catholic International Dia­ logue (ARCIC) met from 25 August to 3 September at Villa Palazzola, near Rome. The Commission, which began in 1970, undertakes the official theological dia­ logue between the Anglican Communion and the Roman Catholic Church.

During its meeting, the Commission concluded and approved a further agreed statement entitled The Gift of Authority. ARCIC has produced two previous agreed statements on authority in the Church, and an elucidation, which were published together in The Final Report in 1981. The Gift of Authority builds upon that work, addressing issues referred to the Commission in the responses of the Anglican Com­munion and the Catholic Church to The Final Report.

In this new statement, ARCIC has taken account of recent developments in the Anglican Communion and the Catholic Church, notably the resolutions concerned with authority of the 1998 Lambeth Conference, The Virginia Report which the Conference com­mended to Anglican provinces for further study, and the 1995 Encyclical Letter on Ecumenism Ut Unum Sint. The Gift of Authority will be published in 1999.

Pope John Paul II received the Commission in private audience at his nearby summer residence in Castel Gandolfo. In his greetings, the Holy Father referred to the mission of the Bishop of Rome as par­ticularly directed to recalling the need for full com­munion among Christs disciples. He prayed that the Spirit of Truth will continue to guide ARCIC’s work “so that as we move towards the Third Millennium of the Christian era, repenting of old sins and cele­brating new hopes, Anglicans and Roman Catholics may know the joy which is ours when brothers and sisters dwell in unity.”

With this meeting, Bishop Mark Santer, the Anglican Co-chairman of ARCIC since 1982, ends his term. The Archbishop of Canterbury has appointed Bishop Frank Griswold, the Primate of the Episcopal Church in the USA, as his successor. Bishop Griswold was able to join the Commission for the final two days of the meeting.

ARCIC expresses great appreciation for the hospitality it received from the Sisters, Chaplain and staff at Palazzola.

The next plenary meeting of the Commission will be from 26 August to 4 September 1999, in Canada.

Palazzola, Rocca di Papa, Italy – 3 September 1998.