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  • » 11/30/2005, 00.00


    Pope tells Orthodox he would have liked to have celebrated St Andrew with them

    In a message on the occasion of the feast day of the Orthodox Church's Patron Saint, the Pontiff expresses his hope for an "even deeper communion", which will allow us to "celebrate together the Eucharist".

    Vatican City (AsiaNews) – Benedict XVI said he "would have wished to be present" at the celebration of the Feast of Saint Andrew in Istanbul to assure the Pan-Orthodox Patriarch Bartholomew I his affection and to pray with him.

    On the occasion of the Feast of Saint Andrew, apostle and brother of Saint Peter, the Vatican delegation led by Card Walter Kasper, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, delivered a message from the Pope.

    In it Benedict XVI assured Bartholomew I of his "fervent hope for an even deeper communion which will overcome those obstacles remaining between us".

    The Holy Father is hopeful that Catholics and Orthodox can "celebrate together the Holy Eucharist, the one sacrifice of Christ for the life of the world".

    A special thought was reserved for the 40th anniversary of the decision by "both Rome and Constantinople" to "cancel from the Church's memory the sentence of ex-communication which had been pronounced."

    The Vatican delegation was received with respect and great warmth. Discussions between the representatives of the two confessions centred on Pope Benedict's desire to visit Istanbul's Fanar neighbourhood and on the overall work of the Joint International Commission on Theological Dialogue between the Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church co-chaired by Cardinal Kasper and the Metropolitan of Pergamus Johannis.

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    See also

    02/12/2008 TURKEY
    Bartholomew: search for unity between Orthodox and Catholics "a duty"
    On the occasion of the feast of St. Andrew, founder of the Church of Constantinople, the patriarch and Cardinal Kasper reaffirm that the ecumenical journey is a road without alternatives.

    14/06/2006 VATICAN
    Pope: Rome and Constantinople, "truly sister Churches"

    At the general audience, Benedict XVI talked about St Andrei, evangelizer of the Greek world. He recalled the attitude of Simon's brother as he faced the torment of the cross, and invited all to "consider and welcome" the evils that strike us, "our crosses… as part of the Cross of Christ".

    22/06/2005 RUSSIA - VATICAN
    Cardinal Kasper in Moscow: we want to deepen Orthodox-Catholic dialogue

    In Moscow for a visit, the President of the Pontifical Council for Christian Unity announced the resumption of Orthodox-Catholic theological dialogue and other "small steps" of collaboration.

    27/11/2004 VATICAN - TURKEY
    Pope and Bartholomew I: may the Saints help us towards unity
    Ecumenical ceremony takes place in St. Peter's Basilica for the handing over of the relics of Sts. Gregory Nazianzen and John Chrysostom.

    23/05/2008 RUSSIA - VATICAN
    Cardinal Kasper in Russia for "deeper" understanding of Orthodoxy
    The head of the Pontifical Council for Christian Unity has begun his visit to Russia, in an atmosphere of renewed fraternity between the two Churches. A meeting with Alexy II is expected by May 30. On the table are delicate questions like the resumption of the work of the commission for theological dialogue, and a meeting between the patriarch and the pope.

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    Fady Noun

    A conference was held on 16-17 January at al-Azhar. Many prominent figures from Lebanon took part, including the Maronite Patriarch Bechara Al-Rahi. The Arab world is divided between "complicit passivity" and "noisy but ineffective speeches". For a former Lebanese premier, coordinated actions are needed to ensure greater efficacy on behalf of Jerusalem’s "pluralistic identity " and "religious freedom". Card Al-Rahi called for joint prayers, Islamic-Christian interfaith solidarity in the Arab world, and support for the Palestinians.

    Yunnan: Christians accused of membership in an apocalyptic sect get up to 13 years in prison

    The Three Grades of Servants cult, an underground pseudo-Protestant sect founded in Henan, is especially strong in the countryside. Those convicted claim they are just ordinary Christians and know nothing about the sect. Defense lawyers have been threatened with loss of their license to practice.


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