“You shall love the Lord your God… and your neighbor as yourself.”
(cf. Luke 10:27)
Theme for 2024 Week of Prayer for Christian Unity Announced
By Fr. James Loughran, SA, Director of Graymoor Ecumenical & Interreligious Institute
Graymoor Ecumenical & Interreligious Institute is pleased to announce the international scriptural theme for the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, January 18 – 25, 2024: “You shall love the Lord your God… and your neighbor as yourself.” (Luke 10:27)
This year’s theme comes through the combined efforts of the Pontifical Dicastery for Promoting Christian Unity, the World Council of Churches and the Christian churches of Burkina Faso. Much of the coordination of this ecumenical project was done by the community of Chemin Neuf, a French Catholic and ecumenical community of vowed and lay people, particularly through their local community in Burkina Faso, a country in the Sahel region of West Africa.
Luke 10:25-37 tells the story of how Jesus is asked by a lawyer, “What must I do to inherit everlasting life?” and Jesus responds, “What is written in the law? What do you read there?” The lawyer responds, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” Then Jesus says to him, “You have given the right answer; do this, and you will live.” But then in order to justify himself, the lawyer says, “And who is my neighbor?” which leads Jesus to tell the parable of the Good Samaritan.
It is a theme rich in charity, mercy, justice and unity. We hope it will facilitate powerful ecumenical prayer and homilies in the 2024 commemoration of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. Hard copy and online materials for the USA Week of Prayer for Christian Unity will be available at www.geii.org beginning in October 2023.