As you have sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world.”
-John 17:18, NRSV
As disciples of Jesus Christ, we seek to testify to the love of God and, in response to the leading of the Holy Spirit, to embody that love in the world. We seek God’s grace in our common effort to understand ever more fully how to live as the body of Christ in this religiously plural and culturally diverse time and place.
Christians have always lived as neighbors of people of other faiths. Even so, events in the United States and across the world have made us more aware of the significance of the world’s religions and their influence on politics, economics, and cultures. At home and abroad, the work of building Christian unity and our efforts for peace, development, and justice are increasingly intertwined with theological questions regarding our relationships with those in other religious traditions.
The NCC’s Interreligious Relations and Collaboration Convening Table, which is composed of representatives sent by the churches (both member and non-member churches alike), exercises special responsibility within the life of the Council for programs, resources, and communications integral to the building and maintenance of interfaith relationships. Currently, we have five national bilateral dialogues with other faith communities, including Buddhist-Christian, Hindu-Christian, Jewish-Christian, Muslim-Christian, and Sikh-Christian dialogues.
In addition to dialogue, study, and programmatic initiatives with our interfaith partners, the convening table provides an ecumenical forum to the churches for sharing, common counsel, and theological reflection regarding interfaith relations. Through this table, we also work together with other ecumenical and interfaith organizations and coalitions to bring our collective perspective to bear on critical issues facing our country and world.
Members of the task force are currently working on a new policy statement, on the problem of religious nationalism globally, for an anticipated adoption by the governing board in early 2024.
For more information about specific interfaith initiatives and news visit:
The Rev. Margaret R. Rose, The Episcopal Church
Dr. Peter E. Makari, Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
Dr. Antonios Kireopoulos, Associate General Secretary, Faith and Order and Interfaith Relations, Email