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Reflections and Statements (Various Topics)

OFFICIAL COMMON STATEMENT
by the Lutheran World Federation and the Catholic Church

1. On the basis of the agreements reached in the Joint Declaration on the
Doctrine of Justification (JD), the Lutheran World Federation and the
Catholic Church declare together: „The understanding of the doctrine of
justification set forth in this Declaration shows that a consensus in basic
truths of the doctrine of justification exists between Lutherans and
Catholics" (JD 40). On the basis of this consensus the Lutheran World
Federation and the Catholic Church declare together: "The teaching of the
Lutheran Churches presented in the Declaration does not fall under the
condemnations from the Council of Trent. The condemnations in the Lutheran
Confessions do not apply to the teaching of the Roman Catholic Church
presented in this Declaration" (JD 41).

2. With reference to the Resolution on the Joint Declaration by the Council
of the Lutheran World Federation of 16 June 1998 and the response to the
Joint Declaration by the Catholic Church of 25 June 1998 and to the
questions raised by both of them, the annexed statement (called „Annex")
further substantiates the consensus reached in the Joint Declaration; thus
it becomes clear that the earlier mutual doctrinal condemnations do not
apply to the teaching of the dialogue partners as presented in the Joint
Declaration.

3. The two partners in dialogue are committed to continued and deepened
study of the biblical foundations of the doctrine of justification. They
will also seek further common understanding of the doctrine of
justification, also beyond what is dealt with in the Joint Declaration and
the annexed substantiating statement. Based on the consensus reached,
continued dialogue is required specifically on the issues mentioned
especially in the Joint Declaration itself (JD 43) as requiring further
clarification in order to reach full church communion, a unity in
diversity, in which remaining differences would be „reconciled" and no
longer have a divisive force. Lutherans and Catholics will continue their
efforts ecumenically in their common witness to interpret the message of
justification in language relevant for human beings today, and with
reference both to individual and social concerns of our times.
 
By this act of signing The Catholic Church and The Lutheran World Federation confirm the Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification in its entirety

 

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