A journey in four dimensions
· The ecumenical vision of Pope Francis ·
“For my own part, following in the footsteps of my predecessors, I wish to assure our firm intention to go forward on the path of ecumenical dialogue”.
With these words from his first meeting with representatives of Churches and Ecclesial communities along with those of other religions, the day after the inauguration of his pontificate, Pope Francis proclaimed his commitment to ecumenism. In this regard, the Pope’s awareness that he he is in fundamental continuity with his predecessors is striking. At the same time, his ecumenical vision shows those special traits that the Holy Father illustrated explicitly during the Divine Liturgy at the Patriarchal Church of St George in Istanbul: “Meeting each other, seeing each other face to face, exchanging the embrace of peace, and praying for each other, are all essential aspects of our journey towards the restoration of full communion. All of this precedes and always accompanies that other essential aspect of this journey, namely, theological dialogue”. In these programmatic words, the four fundamental dimensions of the Pope Francis’ ecumenical vision become evident.
by Kurt Koch
Cardinal President of the Pontifical Council
for Promoting Christian Unity
St. Peter’s Square
Jan. 16, 2019
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