Statement on the position of the Inter-European Division on the involvement of an Italian Seventh-day Adventist Pastor in the signing of the Ecumenical Charter of the Council of the Christian Churches of Bologna.
February 24, 2020
/ Bern, Switzerland
Video and Film
On Saturday, 25 January the pastor of a local church congregation in Italy signed a joint declaration with other faith groups which, while focused on respectful dialogue among and between different religious denominations, contained some statements which run counter to Seventh-day Adventist principles regarding inter-church relations.
The administration of the Inter-European Division (EUD) disapproves the signing of the ecumenical charter, and reaffirms its position concerning the involvement of church entities and representatives in ecumenical endeavors.
As a result, the EUD Officers wish to clarify the involvement of Seventh-day Adventist Pastors and Leaders in meetings and events with representatives of other religious bodies.
The EUD encourages all its entities to abide by and offer education on the valuable principles that are contained in the Bible, in the writings of Ellen G. White and the various documents and statements produced by the Adventist Church concerning our relationship with other religions and denominations. We confirm that:
- The Adventist Church favors dialogue and cordial relationships of mutual respect and understanding with other religious confessions, at all levels of church organization.
- We are fully convinced and strongly defend that freedom of conscience and religious liberty is a right inherent to all human beings, not as something that we claim only for us, but as a right to be granted to all, even to those who think differently from us.
- Dialogue and mutual understanding however, do not mean however agreeing with the others, just for the sake of securing cordial relationships.
- Our fundamental beliefs have been carefully and painstakingly built on the sure foundation of the Bible. These statements of faith define our identity as a church and should always be kept as our hallmark.
- As representatives of Adventist Church, we should clearly speak on behalf of the community that we represent. Thus, we should not negotiate or compromise regarding anything that goes against the principles of our Church and its fundamental beliefs.
For further explanations, please consult the declarations and statements below.
We appreciate the statement of the Adventist Italian Union. This clearly demonstrated that the event in Bologna does not change the official position of Adventist Church in Italy.
Statement of the Italian Union of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.