Pope: Intra-Christian civil war in Ukraine is a “scandal”

Source: Dalje.com The civil war in Ukraine, pitting Orthodox Christians against other Orthodox Christians, is a "scandal," Pope Francis said Wednesday. "Think, this is a war between Christians. You all have the same baptism! You are fighting between Christians. Think about this scandal," Francis said in his weekly general audience at the Vatican. "We pray first of all for the victims, including very many civilians, and for their families, and we ask the Lord for this horrible … [Read more...]

Pope concluding Week of Prayer for Christian Unity

Source: Vatican Radio Pope Francis will bring the curtain down on the annual Week of Prayer for Christian Unity with a Vespers service, Sunday evening, in Rome’s Basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls.  The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, formerly known as the Octave of Christian Unity, is ‎traditionally celebrated over eight days, from Jan 18th  ‎to 25th, around a common theme, and involves ‎Christian communities and Churches across the world, including the Catholic ‎Church.  The Week … [Read more...]

E.J. Dionne: Questioning our questions[What holiness needs to look like in the 21st century]

Source: The Washington Post By E.J. Dionne Jr. Opinion writer It is a mark of our pluralistic moment that I learned of an old joke among rabbis from the writings of a great Christian scholar, Jaroslav Pelikan. In his book “Jesus Through the Centuries,” Pelikan tells the story of a rabbi who is challenged by one of his pupils: “Why is it that you rabbis so often put your teaching in the form of a question?” To which the rabbi replies: “So what’s wrong with a question?” Trying to imagine … [Read more...]

Pope Francis’ List of 15 Spiritual Ailments Applies to Orthodox Christians, Too!

Source: Orthodox Christian Network By Andrew Estocin in The Sounding Orthodox Christians around the world were recently watching as Pope Francis visited The Ecumenical Patriarchate for the Feast of St. Andrew on November 30, 2014.  The same Pope of Rome who washed the feet of an Orthodox Christian in 2013 stood out again for his humility by asking Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew for his blessing.   The resulting photo is a loving reminder of the true meaning of leadership and the … [Read more...]

Pope Francis to Curia: Merry Christmas, you power-hungry hypocrites [A message for all Church administrators]

Source: Religion News Service by Josephine McKenna VATICAN CITY (RNS) Pope Francis launched a blistering attack on the Vatican bureaucracy on Monday (Dec. 22), outlining a “catalog of illnesses” that plague the church’s central administration, including “spiritual Alzheimer’s” and gossipy cliques. The pope’s traditional Christmas greeting to the cardinals, bishops and priests who run the Holy See was more “Bah! Humbug!” than holiday cheer as he ticked off a laundry list of “ailments of … [Read more...]

Orthodox Theologian Sees “Big Step Forward” with Francis Visit to Istanbul

Source: Alteteia "Now we see it is not in any way true" that the Pope wants to subjugate the Orthodox Churches. by JOHN BURGER A leading Orthodox theologian has said that Pope Francis’s words while visiting Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I in Istanbul “represent a big step forward.” While speaking at the Patriarchal Church of St. George in Istanbul’s Phanar district Nov. 30, Pope Francis said that in the context of the efforts being made to achieve full communion with the Orthodox … [Read more...]

Address by His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew to His Holiness Pope Francis during the Divine Liturgy for the Feast of St. Andrew in the Venerable Patriarchal Church (November 30, 2014)

Source: Ecumenical Patriarchate Your Holiness Pope Francis, beloved brother in Christ, bishop of Senior Rome, We offer glory and praise to our God in Trinity for deeming us worthy of the ineffable joy and special honor of the personal presence here of Your Holiness on the occasion of this year's celebration of the sacred memory of the First-called Apostle Andrew, who founded our Church through his preaching. We are profoundly grateful to Your Holiness for the precious gift of Your blessed … [Read more...]

East and West: Two Arms Spread Wide to Embrace the World

Source: Aleteia A grass roots ecumenism involving Christians of East and West is what will take Christians into the future together. by FR DWIGHT LONGENECKER When referring to the Eastern Orthodox churches Pope St John Paul II used to say the church needed to “breathe with two lungs.” Given Pope Francis’s physical condition of having only one lung, perhaps it is best to discover a new analogy. Looking at the cross we can say that Christ needs two arms to reach out to embrace the whole … [Read more...]

Pope Francis: I seek communion with Orthodox Churches

Source: Vatican Radio (Vatican Radio)  In an address upon conclusion of the Divine Liturgy celebrated by Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I at the Orthodox Church of St. George in Istanbul, Pope Francis said “the one thing that the Catholic Church desires and that I seek as Bishop of Rome…is communion with the Orthodox Churches.” Below, please find the complete text of the Holy Father’s address: When I was the Archbishop of Buenos Aires, I often took part in the celebration of the … [Read more...]

Pope Francis celebrates Mass in Turkish church

The Pope preaches a sermon on Unity through the Holy Spirit. Source: Journal of Turkish Weekly   Pope Francis, the spiritual leader of the globe’s estimated one billion Catholics, has celebrated a special Mass in Istanbul on the second day of his official visit to Turkey. Security was tight at the Catholic Cathedral of the Holy Spirit in the city’s Beyoglu district, ahead of the visit by the 77-year-old Argentinian pontiff, who was greeted by a small crowd of well-wishers before … [Read more...]