Road to Ecumenism Still Bumpy, Theologian Tells Protestants

ROME, JAN. 10, 2003 ( Ecumenism is a long and difficult road but full of possibilities, Catholic theologian Teresa Francesca Rossi told Protestant students during an address.

The Italian theologian also appealed to Catholics for greater “affective and effective” commitment in the ecumenical task.

Rossi, vice dean of the School of Theology of the University of St. Thomas Aquinas, on Thursday sketched for the Waldensian School of Theology — the only Protestant university center in Italy — an outline of the Second Vatican Council’s position regarding the opening to other Christian denominations.

Despite the important documents prepared by the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, as well as John Paul II’s texts and gestures on ecumenism, the professor of ecumenical formation lamented that “ecumenism is yet to gel as a priority.”

Rossi’s address was part of a series of studies of the Melanchthon Center, a new Protestant structure that the Lutheran Federation in Italy and the Waldensian school have initiated to stimulate ecumenical debate.