Orthodox, Ecumenical and Religious Leaders Meet Pope FrancisOrthodox, ecumenical and religious leaders with Pope FrancisPope Francis and Patriarch Bartholomew
Father Eric G Tosi sent a text message yesterday saying that he and Metropolitan Tikhon met Pope Francis during the audience with ecumenical and religious leaders. Patriarch Bartholomew was given a prominent place in the proceedings. The Vatican newspaper L’Osservatore Romano reported that the audience began with a greeting from the Ecumenical Patriarch, whom the Pontiff then addressed, calling him, “my brother Andrew,” referring to the Apostle Andrew, brother of Saint Peter. Pope Francis emphasized that the “achievement of full” unity among believers in Christ depends not only on “the plan of God”, but also on “our loyal collaboration”.
“Let us ask the merciful Father to live to the full that faith we received as a gift on the day of our Baptism, and to be able to bear a free, joyful and courage witness to it. It will be our best service to the cause of unity among Christians, a service of hope for a world still scarred by divisions, clashes and rivalry”.
Speaking to the representatives of other religions, the Pope recalled our common responsibility for creation, “which we must love and protect”, he said, with regard to “those who are the poorest and who are weak and suffering, to foster justice, to promote reconciliation and to build peace”.Metropolitan Hilarion reading Great Canon of St Andrew (http://mospat.ru/)
Pope Francis encouraged all the religions “to keep the thirst for the Absolute alive in the world, not permitting a one-dimensional and dangerous view of the human person according to which men and women are reduced to what they produce and consume. “We know”, he said, “how much violence has been spawned in recent history by the attempt to eliminate God and the divine from humanity’s horizon”.
Yesterday evening Metropolitan Tikhon and Father Eric were invited by Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokalamsk to the Canon of Saint Andrew of Crete at Saint Catherine’s Russian Orthodox Church in Rome.
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