(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis addressed the Delegation of the Ecumenical Patriarchate at the Vatican on Saturday to mark the Solemnity of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul, celebrated on 29 June.
In his message, the Pope recalled the pilgrimage he shared with Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I to the Holy Land last month and their common prayer at the Vatican with the presidents of Israel and Palestine.
“The Lord granted us these occasions of fraternal encounter, in which we were able to express the love uniting us in Christ, and to renew our mutual desire to walk together along the path to full unity,” the Pope said.
“We know very well that this unity is a gift of God, a gift that even now the Most High grants us the grace to attain whenever, by the power of the Holy Spirit, we choose to look at one another with the eyes of faith and to see ourselves as we truly are in God’s plan, according to the designs of his eternal will, and not what we have become as a result of the historical consequences of our sins,” he said.
“If all of us can learn, prompted by the Spirit, to look at one another in God,” he continued, “our path will be even straighter and our cooperation all the more easy in the many areas of daily life which already happily unite us.”
In his remarks to the Pope, Eastern Orthodox Metropolitan John Zizioulas of Pergamo, who headed the Delegation, expressed “full commitment… to promote the theological dialogue between our two churches, which continues in a spirit of love, mutual trust and respect.”
He pointed out that the Joint International Commission for Theological Dialogue between the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church is set to meet in September to continue discussions on primacy in the Church.
“It is a difficult subject but with the grace of God we hope to make progress,” Metropolitan Zizioulas said. “The way that Your Holiness understands and applies ecclesial primacy offers inspiration and hope in our efforts to reach agreement on this thorny issue.”
Επικεφαλής της Αντιπροσωπείας του Οικουμενικού Πατριαρχείου στην Θρονική Εορτή της Εκκλησίας της Ρώμης ήταν ο Μητροπολίτης Περγάμου Ιωάννης, συμπρόεδρος της Διεθνούς Μικτής Επιτροπής του Επίσημου Θεολογικού Διαλόγου ανάμεσα στην Ρωμαιοκαθολική και την Ορθόδοξη Εκκλησία, και μέλη ο Αρχιεπίσκοπος Τελμησσού Ιώβ, Πατριαρχικός Έξαρχος των Ρωσικών Ορθοδόξων Παροικιών του Οικουμενικού Πατριαρχείου στην Δυτική Ευρώπη και ο Αρχιδιάκονος του Οικουμενικού Θρόνου Ιωάννης Χρυσαυγής.