Canadian Council of Churches - 75 Years

Dr Alexander Melnyk & Very Rev Dr Ihor Kutash, Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Canada

1. Christianity is a Faith for which reason and history are important and not just transient blips in the cosmos. The Divine Liturgy speaks of the "reasonable flock". This is an important point because there are faiths (i.e. Islam) where reason and the orderliness of the universe through laws are seen as an infringement on the sovereignty of God.

2. Christianity deals with the central issue of mankind — death. It deals with this, not through mere speculation, but in an existential manner by tackling death and bridging the divide that has existed between the created and uncreated. Man hangs over the "nothing" from which creation has come into being — and death is the inevitable "fruit" of this. Christ has changed this curse of nothingness into a path to life without end. This vision is unique among all the faiths.

3. Christianity respects and nurtures freedom because this is an important aspect of the image of God.

4. In many faiths the unique, the personal, is swallowed up by the general and impersonal. In Christianity, we know God as Trinity, as perfect Unity in Diversity. Thus, the personal, the unique, is seen as of eternal importance, fundamental to the very Being of God. The same is thus true of His creation, especially with reference to humans. This is underlined by the Resurrection.

5. It is through membership in the Church that the faithful assimilate the gift of a new existence which defies mortality. This membership comes through baptism and is consolidated through a life of worship and prayer.