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"Encountering One Another in Christ"

The Group for Local Unity (GLU) of Churches Together in England gathered over 200 people at Swanwick for a mid-week conference in March - ecumenical officers, members of Local Ecumenical Projects, officers of Churches Together and Councils of Churches, representatives of churches in local covenants and so on - it's a conference open to anyone concerned with making unity happen locally.

Joan Puls and Gwen Cashmore (RC-Anglican team) were responsible for the worship. Elizabeth Templeton led two bible studies on Acts 10 - showing how Luke offers a reconciling model of historical writing when he deals with an episode which had raised explosive and apparently irreconcilable passions at the time. There was an afternoon outing to Churches Together in Dronfield, and an evening with visitors from overseas (unforgettably, the group with a South African speaker sang "God bless Africa" at the end of the evening on the day of the South African referendum).

Most of the work was done in small groups, addressing the questions: What is the story of our personal ecumenical pilgrimage so far? Where do we find nourishment for the journey? Where are we going and how do we get there?

Because these were practitioners from the local scene, the question of sharing communion came up very strongly. So did the needs of interchurch families. (At least six interchurch families were represented at GLU, only two linked with AIF.) It's a good forum in which to share our point of view, and an exhilarating (if exhausting) week.

Ruth Reardon



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