Pope Francis meets with Ecumenical Council of Churches in Slovakia
On 12 September Pope Francis met with representatives of the Ecumenical Council of Churches in Slovakia, in which Slovakia’s Catholic Bishops’ Conference holds observer status. In his address, the Pope expressed his appreciation for the chance to become “a pilgrim in Slovakia”, adding that he was pleased that his first meeting in the country had an ecumenical nature. “It is a sign,” he added, “that the Christian faith is – and desires to be – a seed of unity and leaven of fraternity in this country.”
Recalling the evangelizing zeal of Saints Cyril and Methodius, known as the “Apostles to the Slavs”, the Holy Father reflected that the saints could help Slovakian Christians rediscover fraternal communion. “May Saints Cyril and Methodius, ‘precursors of ecumenism’,” he prayed, “help us make every effort to work for a reconciliation of diversity in the Holy Spirit.”
In conclusion, Pope Francis expressed the hope that all Christians might one day reunite around the Eucharistic table of the Lord. “May the gift of God be present on the table of all,” he prayed, “so that, even though we are not yet able to share the same Eucharistic meal, we can welcome Jesus together by serving him in the poor. This will be a more evocative sign than many words … especially in this period of suffering, demonstrating that it is only by standing by the weakest that we will truly all together overcome the pandemic”.
Reverend Father Jaromir Zadrapa, Official of the PCPCU, attended the meeting.
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