Inauguration of the Institute for Ecumenical Studies at the Angelicum

24 Oct 2019

The new Institute for Ecumenical Studies at the Pontifical University of Saint Thomas Aquinas in Rome was inaugurated on 23 October 2019, on the occasion of the beginning of the 2019-2020 academic year. Cardinal Kurt Koch, President of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, presided over the Mass of the Holy Spirit in the Church of Saints Dominic and Sixtus in the presence of the Grand Chancellor of the University, Reverend Father Gerard Timoner, OP. During the official academic act, Cardinal Koch held the inaugural lecture entitled “La dimensione ecumenica nella formazione teologica” (“The Ecumenical Dimension in Theological Formation”). Illustrating his argument with examples from the liturgy and canon law, the Cardinal highlighted that “ecumenical formation is the guarantee by which ecumenism may be able to be considered, even in the future, as a sacred duty, and the ecumenical movement may be able to achieve its objective, namely visible unity in a reconciled plurality”.

In the inaugural speech, Reverend Father Michał Paluch, OP, Rector Magnificus, highlighted the ecumenical legacy of the Angelicum, marked by the presence of pioneers in ecumenism such as Cardinal Johannes Willebrands, Cardinale Yves Congar ,OP, and Reverend Father Jean-Marie Tillard, OP. The Ecumenical Section of the Theology Faculty was established in 1983, and in 2003 Cardinal Walter Kasper inaugurated the “Tillard Chair” in ecumenical studies.

The new Institute for Ecumenical Studies at the Angelicum is a specialized institute within the Theology Faculty at the Angelicum under the auspices of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. Focusing on formation and research in the ecumenical field, the Institute offers academic qualifications for the clergy, religious and lay people preparing to become teachers or other professionals in the ecumenical sphere. As well as the licentiate cycle and doctorate in theology with a specialization in ecumenism, it offers the “Ut unum sint” course in ongoing ecumenical formation, and the “Tillard Chair”, a cycle of monthly public lectures held by leaders in the ecumenical world.


Photos: Don Elvir Tabakovic