OCP Correspondent – OCP News Service- September 2015
Metropolitan Dr Mar Yulios selection to Lausanne Orthodox Initiative steering panel is
recognition for Orthodox-Evangelical world
HELSINKI, Finland: The third Lausanne Orthodox Initiative (LOI) consultation which was held outside Helsinki from September 1 to 5, 2015 has elected an Indian Orthodox Bishop in HG Pulikkottil Dr Geevarghese Mar Yulios to the steering committee.
The Ahmedabad Diocese Metropolitan headquartered in the western Indian state of Gujarat took part in the consultations and was selected to the steering committee during the conclusion of the five-day consultations.
Says Dr Geevarghese Mar Yulios of his selection: “I thank Almighty God for being selected to the steering committee of LOI. I request all to keep this organization and their efforts in your prayers. It gives a platform to serve the Orthodox and Evangelicals of the globe in a very serious manner.”
Initially, the steering committee will be meeting through Skype initially on a quarterly basis and later during a formal meeting in London early next year during which they will plan out the future.
The steering committee will discuss regarding finding a solution to different issues. Mar Yulios says the duty of the committee will be mainly to keep a close watch on the national, regional and global dialogues and also pressing issues between the Evangelicals and the Orthodox.
“The selection and its membership is recognition to the Indian Orthodox community in the Orthodox-Evangelical world,” says the Ahmedabad Diocese Metropolitan.
During the consultations it was emphasised that there is room for the two Christian traditions to cooperate in informal as well as formal education. At the end of the meeting the group made a commitment to continue work together and to explore the possibility of a future consultation specifically focused on this issue.
The aim was to foster greater understanding of the different tradition, to build trust and to open up possibilities for mutual support, encouragement and joint working early in the ministry of Orthodox and Evangelical leaders.
The committee decided to hold the next regional meeting at Addis Ababa, capital of Ethiopia, during autumn 2016 and the global meeting early next year. The steering committee is scheduled to meet in London, England, from January 20-22, 2016.
Mar Yulios participated as a delegate and was the sole representative from among the Oriental Orthodox churches at the Helsinki meeting. The invitation to attend the meeting was from His Beatitude Archbishop Leo of Karelia and All Finland and the Evangelical Alliance of Finland.
The Metropolitan also got opportunities to interact with about 63 Orthodox and evangelical leaders at the consultation. The consultations were held at the beautiful Sofia Cultural Centre under the theme ‘The Gospel as Good News’ and the participants being guests of the Orthodox Church of Finland.