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Bishop Hewett reports from the meeting of the Society for the Law of the Eastern Churches

Nov 25, 2019


Bishop Hewett and Pope Francis at the 2019 fall meetings of the SLEC in Rome

Bishop Paul Hewett of the Diocese of the Holy Cross was in Rome last month to participate in the annual meetings of the Society for the Law of the Eastern Churches (SLEC).  This year's gathering marked the 50th anniversary of the SLEC and featured keynote addresses by Pope Francis and Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople.

Bishop Hewett reports that Pope Francis's address focused attention on the relationship between primacy (the Roman model) and synodality (the Eastern and Anglican model) in church governance.  In the course of his address, the Pope noted that "the commitment to build a synodal Church — a mission to which we are all called...has significant ecumenical implications. Based on the common canonical heritage of the first millennium, the current theological dialogue between the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church seeks precisely a common understanding of primacy and synodality and their relationship in the service of the unity of the Church." 

Bishop Hewett writes, that "the SLEC serves the universal Church well, in helping to iron out wrinkles in the fabric of the Body. The Holy Spirit is constantly moving in and out of the fibers of the fabric, so that the two lungs of the Church, East and West, can breathe together again."  

Other speakers included Bishop Kyrillos Katerelos, Bishop of Abydos and Professor of Theology at the University of Athens; Professor Irimie Marga of Lucian Blaga University of Sibiu, and Professor Norman Doe from the University of Cardiff.

For more information on this story, and others like it, see the current issue of The Trinitarian.  


Tagged: hewett, francis, rome, law, eastern churches