Stack of books

The Society for Ecumenical Studies Book Review

Presa, Neal (ed.) (2011). That They May All Be One: Celebrating the world communion of Reformed churches: Essays in Honor of Clifton Kirkpatrick. Louiseville, Kentucky:Westminster John Knox. £12.99.

Ecumenical leaders have been honoured by our Queen and one who is active in our Society has even been made a Dame, Dame Mary Tanner. Others for the time being have to be content with a Festschrift and eulogies for their achievements. The American Presbyterian Church Leader’s many claims to fame include helping to bring together two opposing wings of the world wide Reformed family into the World Community of Reformed Churches when he was President of the World Alliance. He has been active in the World Council of Churches, active in controversial good causes like better relations between the USA and Cuba and dialogue with peoples of other faiths. The book is a set of essays by people who have worked with Cliff and can vouch for his persistence, love and diplomacy. The only thing that makes it slightly less exciting is that it is too bound up with the Reformed world even though on a world scale there are about 80 million of us, a similar number to the Anglican Communion. Half the world’s Christians are Roman Catholics. We should all engage with that fact and not spend so much time talking among our own brand. But ecumenical leaders take heart. Your efforts are appreciated even in a Festschrift!

Donald W Norwood, Ecumenical Research, Oxford. From January 2012 newsletter.