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Pope meets with leader of World Council of Churches, urges prayer for Christian unity

Catholic World News - March 07, 2014

In a meeting at the Vatican, the head of the World Council of Churches told Pope Francis that “I believe that in our time God is opening new ways for us to unity, and for how the world can see our communion in Christ, particularly in the ways we can serve the world together.”

“Your Holiness, today we want to thank you for the way you invite Christians around the world to not be preoccupied with ourselves but to freely share the love of God in words and ministry,” said Olav Fykse Tveit, the Norwegian Lutheran pastor who has led the ecumenical body since 2010. “Of particular urgency for the WCC are questions in the areas of climate change and the economy of life. The future of humanity is threatened; the poorest among us are already feeling the worst consequences of them.”

In response, Pope Francis said that “the World Council of Churches has contributed greatly to making all Christians aware that our divisions represent a serious obstacle to the witness of the Gospel in the world. We cannot be resigned to these divisions as if they were merely an inevitable part of the historical experience of the Church. If Christians ignore the call to unity which comes to them from the Lord, they risk ignoring the Lord himself and the salvation he offers through his Body, the Church.”

“The path to full and visible communion is still today an uphill struggle,” the Pope continued. “Prayer is fundamental on this journey. Only with a spirit of humble and unceasing prayer will we be able to have the necessary foresight, discernment and motivation to serve the human family in all its struggles and needs, both spiritual and material.”

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  • Posted by: fenton1015153 - Mar. 08, 2014 3:59 PM ET USA

    The Pope has clearly stated that the Christian churches need to unite with the Church or risk ignoring the Lord. What more can be said at this point. The WCC seem to be more worried about temporal things but the call to unity is a spiritual thing. Will they ignore it? Who can say?

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