Angelicum to Dedicate a Chair of Ecumenism

ROME, FEB. 6, 2003 ( The University of St. Thomas Aquinas in Rome, the Angelicum, will inaugurate a chair in ecumenical studies.

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The Tillard Chair, named for a Canadian Dominican, will promote research and emphasize contact with non-Catholic academics to further the cause of ecumenism both at the academic as well as the personal levels.

A solemn presentation Feb. 26 will include an address by Cardinal Walter Kasper, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, who will speak on the «Ecumenical Dialogue: Status and Prospects.»

Father Jean-Marie Tillard, O.P., for whom the chair is named, was born in Canada in 1927. He studied in Ottawa and at the Angelicum, where he received a doctorate in philosophy in 1953. Later, he studied at Le Saulchoir in Belgium and taught classes in Canada, Switzerland, England and Spain.

Father Tillard wrote books on the religious life, the Eucharist and ecclesiology from the ecumenical perspective.

He was responsible for the Catholic-Anglican dialogue (1968-2000), and the Catholic-Orthodox dialogue (1980-2000), and was vice moderator of the Faith and Constitution Commission from 1977 until his death in November 2000.

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