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Less nationalism and more internet

· Patriarch Bartholomew to young Orthodox ·

Istanbul, 8. “Fanaticism and fundamentalism are concepts foreign to our tradition and the body of the Orthodox Church. Today, unfortunately we witness expressions of such fundamentalist phenomena, both nationalistic and religious throughout the world and especially, more recently in the Middle East, where they have cost many lives and resulted in the displacement of many Christians in regions where the message of Christian salvation was first proclaimed.” 

The Patriarch of Constantinople Patriarch Bartholomew renewed his appeal in favour of the Christians of the Middle East and condemned nationalist tendencies to the participants of the International Youth Forum. “We are all obliged, and especially young people, to become aware of these phenomena, as well as to do everything that we can to support our Christian brothers and sisters, who are still under the threat of persecution and terrorism.” The Forum - which gathered priests and lay people who work with youth in the eparchies of the Ecumenical Patriarchate – had as its main purpose is to initiate and foster coordination among the different local realities. The goal is to create a true orthodox “youth network”. For this reason the presence of a spiritual father among young people is important, as is the wise use of the most modern means of communication, in particular the internet. “The fact that there are many harmful books in circulation does not mean that the Church should refrain from publishing edifying books. At the same time, the fact that social networks are abused by people promoting falsehood and deception in order to mislead young people does not mean that the Church should not use these same networks.”

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St. Peter’s Square

Aug. 24, 2019

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