OEC Dialogue Group began at initiative of Dr. Vladimir Latinovic working on a project Schatz des Orients, hosted at the Academy of Rottenburg-Stuttgart. Very soon other partners joined the initiative, among others Ecclesiological Investigations International Research Network led by Prof. Gerard Mannion. Our first task was to try to provide support for the project by the leadership of catholic and orthodox Churches. We ended up with official sponsorship of Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity (PCPCU) on one side and German Orthodox Bishops Conference (OBKD) on the other side. After that it was necessary to identify the key persons within both eastern catholic and orthodox Churches, capable and willing to carry on the dialogue between them.
First Conference (2019)
Our first conference took place in Stuttgart (Germany). The intention behind this conference was to encourage and promote much needed theological engagement with regard to the furtherance of dialogue between Orthodox and Eastern Catholic Churches. We sough to gather together official representatives of both Christian traditions, as well as theologians and politicians from the differing contexts where the tensions are greatest to see if we can help move dialogue and so relations forward in this area. More info about this event can be found here.
Group forming and leadership structures (2019)
At the Stuttgart2019 conference we decided to make a formal group. We started by election of the co-chair. Since Dr. Latinovic belongs to the orthodox Church we decided to have co-chair from the eastern catholic Church. The choice is fallen on PD Dr. Dr. Thomas Németh because of his very active role at the Stuttgart2019 conference. After that steering committee consisting of 12 members was elected and we began adding members to the members list.