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Catholic Dictionary




Decree on Ecumenism of the Second Vatican council. It deals with the Catholic principles on ecumenism, the practice of ecumenism, and the churches and ecclesiastical communities separated from the Roman Apostolic See. A careful distinction is made between spiritual ecumensim, mainly through prayer and the practice of virtue, and practical ecumenism, which actively fosters the reunificiation of Christianity. Also the faithful are told to recognize various levels of nearness to the Catholic Church, in descending order, the Eastern Orthodox, Anglicans, and Protestants (November 21, 1964).