Owen White the Ochlophobist, e.g., says the following in the course of a long post that includes a thoughtful response to me: "I would love to see the RCC end, and the Pope of Rome and any who might follow him convert to Orthodoxy..." Of course he is hardly alone in that sentiment. And I do not take its expression by him as an intended insult; this, after all, is from a man who not only knows where I stand, but who has indicated before, sincerely and more than once, that he likes and respects me. I like and respect Owen too; yet even if it were true, I would not see fit to say to him, or indeed to any member of an Orthodox church, "I would love to see Orthodoxy end." Moreover, it isn't even true. Given how I see Orthodoxy from my Catholic standpoint, I don't want it to end. I want it to retain its form of liturgy, its spirituality, its dogmas, its patriarchates and synods. I just don't think those things are incompatible with what I believe, and neither does the Pope. Perhaps that means I'm not negative enough to be accounted as much more than deluded. The Internet can bring such judgments on those who are sincere about ecumenism without compromising what they profess as the truth.
For some years now, I have felt that the method of convergence, which seeks to harmonize the doctrines of each ecclesial tradition on the basis of shared sources and methods, has nearly exhausted its potential. It has served well in the past and may still be useful, especially among groups that have hitherto been isolated from the conversation. But to surmount the remaining barriers we need a different method, one that invites a deeper conversion on the part of the churches themselves.
Cardinal Dulles describes it thus: "I have therefore been urging an ecumenism of mutual enrichment by means of testimony. This proposal corresponds closely, I believe, with John Paul II’s idea of seeking the fullness of truth by means of an “exchange of gifts.” What he says more specifically about that method is encouraging to me, but that is only a point about myself. The larger and more important point is that Dulles no more than the Pope is willing to "give up," as so many online religious controversialists urge. And that's vitally important as a form of obedience to the Lord.