07/11/2007, 00.00
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Moscow Patriarchate: Orthodox Church is “heir to the old, undivided Church”

Metropolitan Kirill, head of the Moscow Patriarchate Department for External Church Relations, talks about the text released by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. It “shows how . . . divided we are” but for an “honest dialogue” we need to know where the other side stands.

Moscow (AsiaNews/Agencies) – An “honest statement” that “shows how close or, on the contrary, how divided we are,” said a statement released by the Russia Orthodox Church in reaction to a text that contained “responses to some questions regarding certain aspects of the doctrine on the church,” released yesterday by the Congregation for the doctrine of the faith.

In a press conference, Metropolitan Kirill of Smolensk and Kaliningrad, head of the Moscow Patriarchate Department for External Church Relations, said that it was “an honest statement [. . .] much better than the so-called 'Church diplomacy'. It shows how close or, on the contrary, how divided we are.”

"For an honest theological dialogue to happen, one should have a clear view of the position of the other side,” because “it helps understand how different we are,” he said.

Basically, the Vatican's document says that the Church of Christ “subsists” only in the Catholic Church because all the elements that He instituted are present in it.

There is nothing new in the text and it is in "full conformity with the doctrine of the Catholic Church,” the Metropolitan said.

“The Orthodox Church is, according to Apostolic Succession, successor and heir to the old, undivided Church. Which is why everything contained in the Catholic document rightfully applies to the Orthodox Church,” he added.

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