Theological talks prepare for future ecumenical unity, Pope tells Lutheran group
January 24, 2011
Pope Benedict XVI met on January 24 with a delegation from the Evangelical Luthern Church of Germany, which had traveled to Rome for the closing ceremonies of this year’s Week of Prayer for Christian Unity.
In tracing the history of the past 50 years of Catholic-Lutheran dialogue, the Pope acknowledged that some people see a slowdown in ecumenical progress, but said the theological foundation has been laid for future efforts. He added that in 2017, when the world marks the 500th anniversary of Luther’s break with the Catholic Church, the time might be right to evaluate not only those 500 years, but also the preceding 1,500 years of Christian unity.
The Pope suggested that Christians should be able to advance a common agenda on some controversial public issues, such as the defense of marriage and of human life.