The Ecumenical Affair
About the Book
Affairs never just happen. When the Woman and the Man are found out, the obvious question is asked: how did it happen? A very Greek answer might be, “I don’t know. It was on fire when I lay down on it.”
The Ecumenical Affair is a creative nonfiction retelling of the gospel and the passionate encounter of the Woman and the Greek—a prominent theologian, philosopher, politician, and ecumenist. When the Woman opens a bestseller by the American author Robert Fulghum, she selects a passage three quarters through. The passage she reads compels her to turn back to the beginning. There, a juicy tidbit rivets her attention. It’s about a man rescued from a fire in an upstairs bedroom. When the fire responders ask, “How did it happen?” he replies, “I don’t know. It was on fire when I lay down on it.”
The Woman closes the book. Words in bold parrot green on a gold mat atop a red leafy cover stare up at her. A smile lights her face. She remembers her bold parrot-green chinos, her gold vest, the fire within her that July night in Vancouver. The Sixth Assembly of the World Council of Churches. Canberra. The Seventh Assembly. The colossal tent in the middle of a wide expanse. Five thousand worshippers. The Eucharist. The politics. That denied last supper. How the Greek and she stood far apart, back to back. The dialogue of St. Macarios and the skull. Consolation and hope.
About the Author
Linda Vogt Turner is a lay writer and educator living in Metro Vancouver Canada where she was born and educated. Linda has written extensively on faith and justice themes. She completed her Master of Arts Degree at Simon Fraser University (SFU) in 2011. The title of her project is Mary Magdalene: Her image and relationship to Jesus. Full text is available online at http://summit.sfu.ca/item/12048.
Linda is a member of the United Church of Canada where she sings in the church choir, is a council member and lay presbytery delegate for Bethany-Newton United Church. She participated in the 6th Assembly of the World Council of Churches held in Vancouver during the summer of 1983.
In 1989, Linda travelled to Nicaragua. There, she witnessed the poverty and the political struggle of the Sandinista Government as Nicaragua recovered from the 1979 insurrection and the continued gorilla resistance of the Contras. Two years later, during the Gulf War, Linda participated in the 7th Assembly of the WCC in Canberra Australia. Inspired and responding to the 7th Assembly Call to Renew the Whole Creation, she returned home and enrolled in university to learn more about socio-economics, human systems, culture and politics.
Seventeen years later in June 2008, as an administrative assistant at SFU and a graduate student, Linda responded to the first ECOTHEE Call for Papers held at the Orthodox Academy of Crete (OAC) under the Auspices of the Ecumenical Patriarch to honour World Environment Day. Subsequently, Linda has been a co-organizer and moderator for the OAC-sponsored 2010 Conservation and Sustainable Use of Wild Plant Diversity conference, the ECOTHEE 11 and 13 conferences, the 2012 and 2014 Sustainable Alternatives to Poverty and Eco-Justice conferences in Crete and Madagascar. In 2012, she chaired the Inter-Ecothee Green the Scene Symposium held at Bethany-Newton United Church.
The Ecumenical Affair is about Linda’s love for the Gospel and her passion for Christian Unity. It is a true story full of passion and faith that asks the timeless question: Were Mary Magdalene and Jesus the Lovers Caught in Adultery?