Catholic theologian urges closer ties with Russian Orthodox

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15 Feb 2017 – By Jonathan Luxmoore OXFORD, England (CNS) — A prominent Catholic ecumenist has urged a better understanding of the Russian Orthodox Church. “Those suspicious of the Russian Orthodox stance should go and see what’s happening,” said Barbara Hallensleben, a consultor with the Vatican’s Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. “Of course, nationalist […]

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Georgia’s ambassador on expectations for papal visit

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Pope Francis takes off for the Georgian capital Tbilisi on Friday for a two-day visit to the majority Orthodox republic. As well as meeting with religious and civil authorities in Tbilisi, the Pope will travel to the nearby ancient city of Mtskheta, founded in the 5th century BC and famed as one of UNESCO’s World […]

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News From The East

kirill pace guerra

Russian Orthodox Patriarch Declares Worldwide “Holy War” on Terrorism The head of the Russian Orthodox Church has called the fight against terrorism a “holy war” and urged international unity and an abandoning of double standards to defeat this global evil. “Today, when our warriors take part in combat operations in the Middle East, we know […]

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Letter #39, 2016: Orthodox Good Friday

April 29, 2016, Friday — Toward the Orthodox Easter In the Orthodox Church, Today Is Good Friday, and Sunday Will Be Easter Sunday In the West, we sometimes forget that the Orthodox world still celebrates Holy Week according to the old calendar. And, according to the old calendar, today is Good Friday, and Easter will […]

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Letter #36, 2016: The Next Synod

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April 27, 2016, Wednesday — The Next Synod: The Return of “The Peace of God”? “The Pope would like to dedicate the next Synod of Bishops to the theme of peace.” —The Italian news agency ANSA, in a short news article released this morning in Italy. The question of what topic the next Bishops’ Synod […]

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Letter #23, 2016: Croatia: A Prime Minister’s Visit

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April 7, 2016, Thursday — The Problem, and the Opportunity, of the Stepinac Case Croatian Prime Minister Meets Pope Francis Croatia’s new Prime Minister, Tihomir Oreskovic (photo) is in Rome today to meet with Pope Francis. The meeting took place this morning. (link) Reports prior to the meeting said that among the subjects of his […]

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After 1,000 Years, the Pope and the Patriarch Meet

Pope Francis and Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill of Moscow sign a joint declaration during a meeting at Jose Marti International Airport in Havana Feb. 12. Standing in front of Cuba's flag is Cuban President Raul Castro. (CNS photo/Paul Haring) See POPE-PATRIARCH-CUBA Feb. 12, 2016.

There is no doubt that the meeting between the Catholic Pope Francis and Kirill, Russian Orthodox Patriarch of Moscow and All Rus’ was, in every estimation, historic: the first face-to-face encounter of its kind since the Great Schism separated Catholicism and Orthodoxy in 1054. The meeting — and the “Joint Declaration” document that resulted — […]

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News from the East

Seraphim (Sobolev)

Archbishop Seraphim (Sobolev) Has Been Canonized On February 3, at the 5th plenary session of the Holy Council of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church, held at Christ the Savior Cathedral in Moscow, the proposal to canonize Archbishop Seraphim (Sobolev) was approved. The members of the Council, which included Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All […]

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Letter #13, 2016: The Kiss That Took A Thousand Years

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February 12, 2016, Friday — The Kiss That Took A Thousand Years The Kiss That Took A Thousand Years HAVANA, Cuba — Pope Francis and Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill kissed each other and sat down together Friday for the first meeting between two branches of the Church divided since 1054 A.D. — almost 1,000 years […]

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Letter #12: The Common Declaration

February 12, 2016, Friday — Today’s Common Declaration of Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill in Cuba The Middle East — “We call upon the international community to act urgently in order to prevent the further expulsion of Christians from the Middle East.”—Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill, Common statement, issued today in Cuba, just a few […]

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Letter #11, 2016: Today’s Meeting

February 12, 2016, Friday — Today’s Meeting Between Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill in Cuba The Day’s Schedule Here is the schedule for the meeting today between Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill, head of the Russian Orthodox Church. Friday, 12 February 2016 7:45 a.m. Departure from Rome’s Fiumicino airport for Havana (Cuba) Greeting to journalists […]

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Letter #10, 2016: The Passion that Looms Over the Pope-Kirill Meeting

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February 6, 2016, Saturday — The Passion that Looms Over the Pope Francis-Patriarch Kirill Meeting in Cuba The “Diplomacy of Music” I just received an email bringing my attention to an article by Dr. Terry Mattingly, an Orthodox scholar and writer who edits the popular GetReligion.org website. Here is the link. The Mattingly article quotes […]

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Letter #9: More on the Pope Francis-Patriarch Kirill Meeting in Cuba

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February 5, 2016, Friday — More on the Pope Francis-Patriarch Kirill Meeting in Havana, Cuba, on February 12 “Thus, in full awareness and at the beginning of his ministry in the Church of Rome that Peter bathed with his blood, the current successor assumes as his primary commitment that of working tirelessly towards the reconstruction […]

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Letter #8, 2016: The Pope and Kirill Will Meet in Cuba

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February 5, 2016, Friday — Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill Will Meet in Cuba on February 12, 2016. IMPORTANT PRESS COMMUNIQUE FROM THE VATICAN Joint Press Release of the Holy See and of the Patriarchate of Moscow The Holy See and the Patriarchate of Moscow are pleased to announce that, by the grace of God, […]

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Joint Declaration of Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia

“The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God the Father and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with all of you” (2 Cor 13:13). 1. By God the Father’s will, from which all gifts come, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, and with the help of the Holy […]

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The Pope and the Patriarch

12/12/2015 Vatican Basilica. Holy Mass celebrated by Pope Francis on the occasion of the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe.

“In full awareness, and at the beginning of his ministry in the Church of Rome that Peter bathed with his blood, the current successor assumes as his primary commitment that of working tirelessly towards the reconstruction of the full and visible unity of all Christ’s followers. This is his ambition and compelling duty.” —Emeritus Pope Benedict XVI, April […]

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Francis and Kirill

On February 12, 2016, Pope Francis met with Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill at the airport in Havana, Cuba. It was the first time a Roman Pope has ever met a Russian Orthodox Patriarch. What now? “In the contemporary world, which is both multiform yet united by a shared destiny, Catholics and Orthodox are called to […]

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Letter #7, 2016: A Pope-Patriarch Kirill Meeting in… Cuba?

January 26, 2016, Tuesday — Will Pope Francis Meet Kirill in… Cuba? “Everyone knows that he is the Pope of surprises. If he wants to make a change to his schedule, he will certainly do so.” —Captain Domenico Giani, head of the Vatican’s security force, after visiting Mexico recently to prepare the Pope’s February 12-18 […]

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Time for “mutual benevolent attention”?

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  By Peter Anderson At its last meeting on October 22, the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church elected several individuals as bishops. One of these, Archimandrite Anthony (Sevruk), is rector of St. Catherine of Alexandria Church in Rome.  Another, quite interesting choice, is Archimandrite Tikhon (Shevkunov), who was made bishop of Yegorevsk, vicar of […]

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Letter #47, 2015: From Russia to Rome

October 23, 2015, Friday — From Russia to Rome “The word mother can be traced back cleanly to Proto-Indo-European, as can father, brother and sister — it appears in cognate form in languages like Sanskrit, Greek, Latin, and so forth, and it may go back further.” —Discussion of the origin of the word “mother” on […]

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