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Russian Orthodox Church denies plan for meeting of Pope, Patriarch

January 27, 2016

The Patriarchate of Moscow has dismissed rumors that a summit meeting between Pope Francis and Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill is being planned for next month.

Speculation about a meeting was nourished by the fact that both the Pontiff and the Patriarch will be in the Western hemisphere in February, when Pope Francis visits Mexico and Patriarch Kirill travels to Cuba. But the Moscow patriarchate, in a January 26 statement, said that trips were coincidental.

"The leader of the Russian Orthodox Church and the head of the Roman Catholic Church will be visiting completely different countries, albeit on the same continent," the statement read.

Although there have been discussions of a possible summit, the patriarchate said, "no specific time and place of such a meeting have yet been stipulated."


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  • Posted by: Gregory108 - Jan. 28, 2016 5:00 AM ET USA

    It makes no difference. Trying to meet the Russian Orthodox Church and its Patriarchs half-way is a futile pursuit, likely not worth the effort. Sadly, that Church represents a lot of people, and discussion would be helpful, but it'll take another time and a different ROC to talk and agree. For now, it is futile. We should not waste more time on these efforts. Tell the ROC that we are open to talking and then stop wasting time; do something else. "You call us; we won't call you!"