(RNS) Major Baptism Agreement Signed by Catholic and Reformed Churches

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Leaders of Catholic and Reformed churches have signed an agreement to recognize each other’s sacraments of baptism, a public step toward unity among groups that are often divided by doctrine.

“Baptism establishes the bond of unity existing among all who are part of Christ’s body and is therefore the sacramental basis for our efforts to move towards visible unity,” reads the “Common Agreement on Mutual Recognition of Baptism.”

The document was signed, after seven years of discussion, at a worship service Tuesday (Jan. 29) at St. Mary Cathedral in Austin, Texas, which opened the annual meeting of Christian Churches Together in the USA, an ecumenical network created in 2001.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Religion News & CommentaryEcumenical RelationsOther ChurchesBaptistsRoman Catholic* TheologySacramental TheologyBaptism

3 Comments
Posted February 4, 2013 at 8:00 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]



1. Vatican Watcher wrote:

Dumb.  We all know ‘unity’ is a sham when it consists of documents, communiques, and other signs of ‘dialogue’ that in the end are meaningless.  Catholics are still Catholic and Reformed are still Reformed.

February 4, 1:24 pm | [comment link]
2. Terry Tee wrote:

Well, No 1, it’s better than regarding fellow Christians as doubtfully baptized.  However, I notice that the United Church of Christ is among the signatories and I think it is more open than most to trendiness.  Can someone reassure me that under the siren call of inclusive language they will not baptise in the name of the Creator, the Redeemer and the Sanctifier?  Was this issue discussed, I wonder?  But before being sniffy about the UCC I ought to mention that a Catholic pastor in, if I remember correctly, Queensland, Australia, was suspended from ministry for doing just this.

February 4, 3:21 pm | [comment link]
3. C. Wingate wrote:

Looking at this analysis it looks to me as though the giving ground here is mostly on the Reformed side and not on the Catholic side. In principle, for example, all Presbyterian baptisms should be recognized by Rome provided the triune name is used (a point addressed in the document), but the reverse was apparently not always true. The document seems to concede that using other formulas is an abuse which invalidates the rite for all parties, not just for the Catholics.

February 4, 6:56 pm | [comment link]
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