Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Pope Francis: the blood of martyrs is the seed of Christian unity

Catholic World News - May 08, 2014

Pope Francis received the head of the Armenian Apostolic Church in audience on May 8 and said that the blood of martyrs is the seed of Christian unity.

The Pontiff’s remarks come one year before the centenary of the Armenian genocide, in which an estimated 1.5 million Armenians perished at the hands of the Ottoman Turkish regime.

The Armenian Apostolic Church is among the Oriental Orthodox churches that ceased to be in full communion with the Holy See following the Ecumenical Council of Chalcedon (451). Since Vatican II, ecumenical talks have produced closer ties between the Armenian Church and the Holy See, and in 1996, Armenian Patriarch Karekin I, the predecessor of the current prelate, joined Pope John Paul II in a common statement of faith, ending the theological disputes that had divided their churches.

After paying tribute to the progress made in relations between the Catholic Church and the Armenian Apostolic Church, Pope Francis said that “the number of disciples who shed their blood for Christ in the tragic events of the last century is certainly higher than that of the martyrs of the first centuries, and in this martyrology the children of the Armenian nation have a place of honor.”

“As in the ancient Church the blood of martyrs became the seed of new Christians, so in our day the blood of many Christians has become the seed of unity,” the Pope continued. “The ecumenism of suffering, the ecumenism of martyrdom, the ecumenism of blood is a potent reminder to walk along the path of reconciliation between the Churches, with determination and trusting abandonment to the action of the Spirit.”

Additional sources for this story
Some links will take you to other sites, in a new window.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Progress toward our July expenses ($15,902 to go):
$35,000.00 $19,098.29
45% 55%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

Show 1 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: Minnesota Mary - May. 08, 2014 9:10 PM ET USA

    I think that the blood of today's martyrs needs to be mixed with proper catechetical formation from our shepherds and teachers in order for unity to come back to the Church.

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Renewal with God before Us: Christ Determines All 2 hours ago
Sons of Dominic Prepare for Family Synod 24 hours ago
Dominican theologians assess proposals for divorced and remarried July 29
The ‘Pope Francis effect’—changing the way the world sees the papacy July 29
Renewal with God Behind Us: Man Determines All July 28

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
New management, new changes coming for reformed Vatican bank CWN - July 8
Sweeping reforms to Vatican's media, financial operations CWN - July 9
‘Even Genghis Khan didn’t do this’: Mosul emptied of Christians CWN - July 21