Student Christian Movement sees revival of interest in ecumenical Christianity as it prepares for annual conference

The 2011 Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, which ends on January 25, marks the beginning of an encouraging year for the ecumenical movement in Britain, according to the Student Christian Movement (SCM), which has Catholic members.

Jenny Morgans, chairwoman of SCM’s student council, said: “We are really encouraged by the revival of interest in inclusive, ecumenical Christianity. Over the past year we have had requests for advice and support from students keen to establish ecumenical student groups, and conference is a great opportunity for students from different backgrounds to meet and explore their faith together.”

The ecumenical conference will bring together students from all over Britain, as well as international students, to explore different approaches to prayer and how prayer relates to action.

The keynote speakers will be Dr Nicola Slee, feminist theologian, writer and poet, and the Rev Dr Kenneth Leech, veteran social justice campaigner and founder of the youth homelessness charity Centrepoint.

The programme also includes workshops on topics including Orthodox prayer, community organising, mental health, drumming as prayer, discipleship and different ways of reading the Bible, as well as a Campaigns Corner and a Prayer Walk around the grounds.

The Student Christian Movement is an ecumenical student-led movement. Its annual conference, Still Small Voice, runs from February 4 to 6 at The Hayes conference centre, Swanwick, Derbyshire.