Prelate: non-Catholic Armenians see Pope as ‘true universal pastor’
July 11, 2016
Reflecting on the “extremely positive” legacy of Pope Francis’s recent apostolic journey to Armenia, an Armenian Catholic prelate said that “not only Catholics responded, but also the faithful of the Apostolic Church who recognized in the Pope a true universal pastor.”
Armenia is described as the first Christian nation, and 93% of Armenians are members of the Armenian Apostolic Church, an Oriental Orthodox church that ceased to be in full communion with the Holy See following the Ecumenical Council of Chalcedon in 451. 6% of Armenians are Catholic.
“Perhaps the time is right for the clergy, both Catholic and Apostolic, to make an examination of conscience and begin working so that the Lord’s prayer ‘that they may be one,’ may become a reality,” said Archbishop Raphaël Minassian.
Perhaps rather than wasting time with self-defense and justifying our conduct, the time has come to accept mistakes and to begin a new spiritual path in the service of the Armenian people, without selfish calculations, without claims to power or positions, but cognizant that the responsibility entrusted to us: to aspire to that journey, together, towards our true goal which is the unity of Christ’s Church
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