Tuesday, October 18, 2005

The meeting

(AGI) - Vatican City, Oct.18 - Benedict XVI wants to meet Moscow patriarch Alexis II: Moscow Catholic Archbishop mons. Tadeusz Kondrusiewicz said so to the reporters on the sidelines of the Synod. "Let's pray they will meet - he said - This event would allow to start a new page in the history of relationship between the two churches, the largest in the world".

Nothing new here at all. The Holy Father, both the previous one and the current one, wants to meet with the Patriarch of Moscow. Is it going to happen anytime soon? Doubtful.

Mons. Kondrusiewicz also mentioned the proposal of a common Synod with the Orthodox, suggested in May by card. Walter Kasper, president of the Vatican Council for Christian Unity, recently mentioned again by Leopolis archbishop, card. Lubomyr Husar. "THe proposal was met very well by the Orthodox authorities".

Who exactly are these 'Orthodox authorities' that have met this proposal with a positive response? The Russians? I doubt it. The Ukrainians themselves? Other parties? Anyone who really counts? We'll see if there is any follow-up to this.

"In Russia, the catholic church is expanding: there are now 220 official parish churches (6 in Moscow), another 300 communities are currently waiting to be officially enrolled by the authorities, 120 priests are working on it, 90 pct foreign, and there already 65 seminarists in St.Petersburgh. "Proselitism is not our policy - said the archbishop - we are not supporting the coversion of orthodox, but the people who want to turn to catholicism are to be respected. Despite these problems, everyone expects important steps towards unity: it's no longer time to throw stones, but to pick them up".n(AGI) -
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With statistics like this, all the optimism in the world is not going to placate the Russian Orthodox Church. Cardinal Kasper and the Archbishop of Moscow either have inside sources that tell them things that the Russians do not admit when they're talking in the press about Catholic infringement or the cardinal and the archbishop simply make these comments and hope for the best, as if talking will change attitudes.

Read the complete article The Pope wants to meet Alexis II from AGI.

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