Baptists Join Pope in Vatican for Ecumenical Hand-Holding

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Recently, the Baptist World Alliance (BWA) and the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity held a joint meeting with a theme of “Common Christian Witness” in the world.

First, I’d like to point out that true Christians, including Baptists, have no “common Christian witness” with Roman Catholics, as Catholics are not Christians. (To read more on why Catholics are not Christians, see here.)

The meeting convened in Rome, and reportedly discussed “reflecting on the global cultural context in which common Christian witness is being conducted around the world.”

As part of the commission’s planned discussions, the delegation met with Pope Francis at the Vatican. While speaking with Rev. Dr. Frank Rees, Baptist Co-Chair of the dialogue as well as chair of the BWA Commission on Baptist Doctrine and Christian Unity, Pope Francis requested that Baptists be in prayer for him. He affirmed the vision behind the Baptist-Catholic Dialogue and expressed the importance of unity among Christians.

With several meetings all over the world, the ecumenical Baylor University, a Baptist University associated with the General Baptist Convention of Texas (which is affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention) also partook in this meeting which took place Dec 10-16 hosting a dialogue at it’s Truett Theological Seminary.

Most recently, a group of twenty ecumenical participants convened at a Baptist church in Rome, Italy, to continue Phase III of the dialogue.

Chisea Evangelica Battista Di Trastevere, a local Baptist church in Rome that is deeply committed to ecumenical engagement. 

The ecumenical movement is a movement that seeks to unify Protestant churches under the authority of the pope. While Baylor University is not directly tied to the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC), it is still associated with the General Baptist Convention of Texas which is tied to the SBC. However, Southern Baptists are not immune to this movement. Two years ago, Russell Moore of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC) an entity of the SBC, along with Rick Warren, a notable Southern Baptist pastor, convened in the Vaticanalong with the pope to discuss “common gospel witness” for traditional marriage.

Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness? What accord has Christ with Belial? Or what portion does a believer share with an unbeliever? What agreement has the temple of God with idols?

2 Corinthians 6:14-16
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