Are Ecumenism and Apologetics at Odds?
Must ecumenism and apologetics butt heads? What is the proper place of apologetics in inter-Christian dialogue?
When having a conversation about any topic, the most frustrating thing is when we appear to be talking about two different things. Agreeing on what we are actually talking about is the first step to having any kind of productive conversation about anything.
In this way, apologetics helps us to define what it is we are actually debating. When debating with a non-Catholic about the role of Mary, it is important to first agree what it is both parties actually believe about Mary and what those beliefs are actually based upon. Apologetics plays a role in helping define the terms we are using and where we have overlapping beliefs with others and where we have contradictory beliefs.