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Vatican previews meeting of Pope, Archbishop of Canterbury

CWN - June 10, 2013

Looking forward to the June 14 meeting between Pope Francis and the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Pontifical Council for Christian Unity has said that the meeting will be “of particular interest since it is the first meeting of the Archbishop and the Pope since their inaugurations, which took place at about the same time, just over two months ago.”

The Anglican leader, Dr. Justin Welby, shares the Pope’s interest in “global justice and the ethical regulation of financial markets,” the Pontifical Council said in a June 10 press release. The Vatican statement also took note of Dr. Welby’s “great emphasis on reconciliation” and his calls for peaceful resolution of conflicts—again comparing his statements with those of the Pontiff.

The Pontifical Council said that Anglicans and Catholics “also must work together to provide clear moral guidance to society.” In that regard, the statement observed that the Archbishop of Canterbury has “collaborated closely with the Catholic Archbishop of Westminster, Vincent Nichols, to safeguard marriage and other Christian values in society.” The two prelates have issued statements calling—unsuccessfully—for the defeat of legislation allowing legal recognition of same-sex marriage.

Upon his arrival at the Vatican, Dr. Welby will pray at the tomb of St. Peter, and later at the tomb of Blessed John Paul II; these visits were scheduled at the Anglican leader’s request. He will then meet with Pope Francis, and together they will hold a mid-day prayer service.

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