CEC at the Conference of the International Orthodox Theological Association

25 January, 2023

War, peace and public theology are some of the topics brought into focus by the Conference of European Churches (CEC) at the Conference of the International Orthodox Theological Association (IOTA). CEC Executive Secretary for Theological Dialogue, Katerina Pekridou participated in the conference hosted by the Volos Academy for Theological Studies in Greece, from 11 to 15 January. 

A unique feature of this mega-conference was the plenary sessions where the participants discussed issues of particular importance: war and peace, the church and the pandemic; and the 2020 social ethos document of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople, For the Life of the World.

Examining the fifth chapter on war, peace and violence of the Social Ethos Document, Pekridou highlighted that “the Orthodox Church would benefit from the development of a public theology that discusses peace and war within the framework of international law and human rights taking into consideration current challenges to peace.”

She also participated in a panel discussion on “Personal Conscience in the Age of Ecclesiastical Crisis Special Session” organised by the Wheel, journal of Orthodox Christian thought, and moderated a special session on Orthodox-Catholic Dialogue, launching a new PRO ORIENTE database and discussing the challenges of ecumenical reception in East and West.

The four-day conference featured a number of scholars from diverse study areas, representing countries in America, Europe, Australia, Asia, Africa, the Balkans, and Russia, including bishops and clergy from various Orthodox jurisdictions, participated in the conference that explored the theme of “Mission and the Orthodox Church”.

A fruit of the Holy and Great Council of 2016, IOTA was founded in 2017 with the aim of contributing theologically to the renewal of the Orthodox Church, supporting pan-Orthodox unity and synodality. In 2025, at the invitation of His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, IOTA will organise The Faith of Nicaea Conference commemorating the 1700-year anniversary of the first ecumenical council. IOTA’s third mega-conference is scheduled for 2027, in keeping with its goal of meeting every four years.

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