Heads of Oriental Orthodox Churches Conclude their Eighth Meeting, December 9-10, 2005, with a Common Declaration
The Common Declaration signed by their Holinesses, Pope Shenouda III, Patriarch Mar Ignatius Zakka I and Catholicos Aram I, reaffirmed their unity of faith
based on common doctrinal position and theological teachings and manifested through Eucharistic communion and other sacraments of the Church.
The three Heads of churches reaffirmed their commitment to the ecumenical movement both through the World Council of Churches and the Middle East Council of Churches. In their solidarity and unity of faith, they feel responsible to strive for the unity of all the churches, in the region and other parts of the
It is with the same spirit that their churches are actively engaged in bilateral theological dialogues with Orthodox, Catholic, Anglican and Reformed Churches
which will further spell out the authenticity and orthodoxy of the Christological teachings of the Oriental Orthodox Churches.
Together they called for the preservation of the sacredness and integrity of the Christian Family, an institution established by God, hence condemning all
practices and behaviors related to marriage and sexual orientation that are not in accord with biblical and moral teachings.
They reaffirmed the importance of inter-religious dialogue, underlining that Christian-Muslim Dialogue has been an integral part of the history, civilization
and culture of the Middle East. With the prevailing situation and developments in the region, this dialogue of life should be enhanced to develop mutual
respect and understanding between Christian and Muslim teachers, scholars and community leaders.
They appealed to their communities living in different parts of the world to remain firmly attached to their native lands by supporting initiatives and
actions that promote Peace with justice in the Middle East, highlighting the role their respective churches have played in this respect. The peace process
must continue they said and UN Security Council resolutions must be implemented by Israel, and Iraq should regain its independence, integrity and sovereignty. Only full justice will bring a real, permanent and comprehensive peace in the region.
Condemning all forms and expressions of violence, Heads of churches stressed that Religion in its essence is a promoter of love, hope and reconciliation.
They appealed to their churches worldwide to remain faithful to the gospel committing themselves to give renewed efficiency and vitality to the witness of
The full text of the Common Declaration is posted on the MECC website at: www.mec-churches.org