Home - VIS Vatican - Receive VIS - Contact us - Calendar

The Vatican Information Service is a news service, founded in the Holy See Press Office, that provides information about the Magisterium and the pastoral activities of the Holy Father and the Roman Curia...[]

Last 5 news

VISnews in Twitter Go to YouTube

Monday, June 11, 2007


VATICAN CITY, JUN 9, 2007 (VIS) - At midday today, the Holy Father visited the offices of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches, which are located near the Vatican, to mark the 90th anniversary of the foundation of that dicastery by Pope Benedict XV. Also today, the Pope accepted the resignation from the office of prefect of the congregation presented by Cardinal Ignace Moussa I Daoud and appointed Archbishop Leonardo Sandri to replace him.

  The Pope opened his address by pointing out that today "the calendar of the Latin Church recalls St. Ephrem, the great Doctor of the Syrian Church." He then went on: "As father and pastor, I feel it my duty to raise fervent prayers to God and launch a heartfelt appeal to all those responsible, that everywhere, from East to West, Churches may profess their Christian faith in complete freedom. May the sons and daughters of the Church everywhere be allowed to live in individual and collective serenity; may groups and individuals be guaranteed dignity, respect and a future, with no prejudice of any kind to their rights as believers or as citizens.

  "From my lips," he added, "there rises a more than ever heartfelt invocation for peace in the Holy Land, in Iraq, in Lebanon and in all the territories under the jurisdiction of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches, as well as in other regions involved in an apparently unstoppable spiral of violence. May the Churches and the disciples of the Lord remain where Divine Providence placed them by birth, where they ought to remain because their presence dates back to the beginnings of Christianity."

  The Holy Father indicated that by visitng to the offices of the dicastery his intention was "symbolically to continue the pilgrimage to the heart of the East proposed by Pope John Paul II in his Apostolic Letter 'Orientale lumen.' ... I ideally began that pilgrimage by taking the name of a Pope who greatly loved the East. And, officially opening my Petrine service as bishop of Rome, I prayed before the tomb of the Apostle, inviting those oriental patriarchs in communion with Peter's Successor to join me at my side. ... My apostolic trip to Turkey, ... was another particularly fruitful moment in my pilgrimage to the heart of the East.

  "Today," he added, "the Pope again thanks the people of the East for the faithfulness they have paid in blood" and he, "in his turn, assures them that he wishes to remain at their side, reaffirming his profound esteem towards the Eastern Catholic Churches for their unique role as living witnesses of the origins. Indeed, without a constant relationship with the traditions of the origins, the Church of Christ has no future."

  "The ecumenical option is irreversible," said Pope Benedict, "and inter-religious understanding cannot be postponed. I favor the correct implementation of synodal collegiality and a regular control over the ecclesial development brought about by the rediscovery of religious freedom. The priority of formation is very close to the Pope's heart, as is the 'aggiornamento' of the pastoral care of families, the young and vocations, and ... pastoral concern for culture and for charity." In this context the Holy Father called for the "movement of charity" to continue and to increase, so that "the Holy Land and other eastern regions may receive the necessary spiritual and material support for ordinary ecclesial life and for special needs."

  The Holy Father concluded by calling for "intelligent efforts ... to face the serious problem of migration, which sometimes deprives much tried communities of their finest resources. Migrants must be guaranteed a proper welcome in their new context and the indispensable bond with their own religious tradition."
BXVI-VISIT/ORIENTAL CHURCHES/...                VIS 20070611 (630)

No comments:

Post a Comment

Copyright © VIS - Vatican Information Service