For a century, going back to the 1910 Edinburgh Conference, Christians have been committed to Prayer for Unity and for most of that time the focal point has been the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, January 18-25.
Expressions and emphases have varied with time and place but in recent years what started as a step to unity became something of an end in itself as churches lost their enthusiasm for unity and the Week of Prayer became something of a ritual if not a burden.
Opinions differ as to whether this is gain or loss but the contribution of the Week of Prayer over many years, and in particular the work of Paul Couturier ought not be lost.
A Sermon preached at a local Unity Service during the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, 2010, based on the story of Eli and Samuel (1 Samuel 3:1-20) and Nathaniel (John 1:43-51), following a theatre visit to see Harold Pinter’s No Man’s Land, with Christian unity the furthest thought from my mind.
Three recent books from the World Council of Churches reflect the constant evolution of thought, attitude and action in Geneva.