Resolved, the House of _______ concurring, That the 79th General Convention approve and commend the existing relationship between the Convocation of Episcopal Churches in Europe (Convocation) and the Evangelisch-Lutherische Kirche in Bayern (ELKB) (Evangelical Church in Bavaria), and be it further
Resolved, That the 79th General Convention approve and commend the process of exploring deeper relations and the dialogue toward full communion between The Episcopal Church and the ELKB.
The Convocation’s churches in Bavaria have a long and fruitful relationship with the ELKB. This includes shared Eucharistic and other worship, mutual invitations to preach and preside at services, shared worship and office space, and joint mission, including support of refugees.
The Episcopal Church and the ELKB have, at the initiative of the Bavarian Landesbischof and the Presiding Bishop of TEC, been in conversation since 2014 with the goal of establishing a deeper relationship between the Convocation, TEC and the ELKB. The conversations have involved representatives of the Anglican Communion, the Church of England, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), the Evangelische Kirche in Deutschland (EKD) (Evangelical Church in Germany) and the Vereinigte Evangelisch-Lutherische Kirche Deutschlands (VELKD) (United Evangelical Lutheran Church of Germany).
The Convocation formally affirmed this deepening relationship by resolution at its 2016 Convention. At its 2017 Convention, the Convocation commended by resolution the dialogue toward full communion between The Episcopal Church and the ELKB.
This dialogue seeks to respond to Anglican Consultative Council resolution 16 (2016, Lusaka), commending a closer relationship between Anglicans and Lutherans globally. It is also in the spirit of Call to Common Mission, the full communion agreement between TEC and the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America. In practice, the current relationship between the Convocation and the ELKB is similar to the relationship expressed by the Meissen Agreement between the Church of England and the EKD.
This process could provide a model for the deepening of relationships between other Lutheran churches in Germany and churches of the Anglican Communion.
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