Friday, March 10, 2006

The nuncio on relations with Russia

From AsiaNews: Nuncio in Moscow: modest progress with Russia and patriarchate

This interview of Nuncio Monsignor Mennini by the Russian Catholic newspaper, Svet Evangelia, starts out typically enough.

He [Mgr Antonio Mennini] said that especially as regards links with the Orthodox, one should not “waste time in sterile research about who is in the wrong and who is in the right. We are called to build real brotherhood. Let’s now allow ourselves to be paralyzed by the unhappy experiences of the past.”

The nuncio's comments fall back to earth though with a bit of realism.

In a long conflict, usually both parties hold a measure of responsibility. In the name of charity, we are always called to be the first to stretch out our hand and to smile. And perhaps we must do it not only once, but more times: on the other hand, there is no other way, and this is not out of “professional duty”, but rather to implement the Christian vocation we are called to.

With all the hand-holding that the Vatican has done over the years vis-a-vis the Russian Orthodox Church, the second quote listed by the monsignor has to be the most realistic and Christian justification for the continued work done with the patriarchate I've read. 'We have to keep doing it because that's what Christ would do'. I'd rather read that than certain other officials' statements that all is well and definite progress is being made while at the same time Patriarch Alexi is accusing Rome of some new slight.

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