Skip to comments.Together with pope, ecumenical patriarch addresses synod for first time (in history)
Posted on 10/18/2008 1:17:41 PM PDT by NYer
In this picture made available by the Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano, the spiritual leader of the world's Orthodox Christians, patriarch Bartholomew, at far right seated, prays with Pope Benedict XVI, at far left, in the Sistine Chapel at the Vatican, Saturday Oct. 18, 2008.
Vatican City (AsiaNews) - Ecumenical patriarch Bartholomew is calling it "an historic event," after being the first to speak to the bishops of the Catholic Church gathered for a synod. For his part, Benedict XVI said, "Your fathers are also our fathers, and ours are yours: if we have the same fathers, how can we not be brothers?" Behind the two of them, who were seated on chairs of equal size, the depiction of the last judgment in the Sistine Chapel.
It was in the most famous of the chapels in the apostolic palace, in fact, that this afternoon the first vespers for the 29th Sunday of ordinary time were celebrated, "on the occasion of the participation of ecumenical patriarch Bartholomew I in the work of the 12th assembly of the synod of bishops." "At this moment, we have truly experienced the synod," the pope commented, speaking spontaneously at the end of the extensive address by the patriarch. "Hearing the word of God," he added, "also opens one's eyes to the realities of today," and the "fathers" of the synod "will continue their work illuminated by the words" of Bartholomew.
The patriarch of Constantinople, after speaking of the "historic event" because of his very presence at the synod, expressed his hope of arriving one day at "full unity" between Orthodox and Catholics, overcoming the current differences and agreeing "fully over the role of primacy and collegiality in the life of the Church." Bartholomew also indicated some concrete objectives: "as disciples of God," he added, "it is more imperative than ever to present a single perspective, beyond social, political, and economic views, on the need to uproot poverty, promote equilibrium in the globalized world, combat fundamentalism and racism, and develop religious tolerance in a world of conflict."
This was indeed an historic event. As soon as it is available, I hope to post the full text of the Patriarch’s address.
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It would be nice to see 1000 plus years of Great Schism be reconciled. Imagine what that could do for the Body of Christ as a whole...
It would also be nice to see Canterbury, minus a few nuts and flakes, back in communion.
How significant is this? Haven’t they ever been together for a meeting or public function?
Do you think they are coming together as a united front to stand against the overpowering march of Islam in Europe?
In times like ours, when considering such events as this, in conjunction with the unity synod of the Orthodox themselves (http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-religion/2103414/posts), one can’t help but think of a line from The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, where Gandalf says: “The board is set, the pieces are moving.”
We truly live in “interesting times”!
This is the first time the Patriarch of Constantinople has ever been asked to address a Roman Catholic Synod of Bishops. He was most humbled by this gesture and delivered a beautiful treatise on the significance of the Church in today's world. It is well worth reading. Once I find the full text, I will post a link.
It was most impressive to see the Holy Father on the left and Patriarch on the right flanking Michaelangel's painting of the Last Judgment. The sat in identical chairs and respected each other as equals. Vatican radio provided live coverage with EWTN picking up the feed. That was at 11am this morning. I just checked EWTN's web site but there is no mention of a rebroadcast. I am hopeful, all the same, that perhaps they will replay it sometime this evening. It is well worth watching. The Patriarch's address was profound! Unfortunately, I had to leave midway through it and will continue to scour the internet for a link.
It is evident that both view these meetings as the fruitful work of the Holy Spirit.
Sorry, but the fruits would have to go as well! ;-)
“It would also be nice to see Canterbury, minus a few nuts and flakes, back in communion.”
When ++Akinola, ++Kolini, ++Orombi, ++Jensen, +Duncan, +Nazir-Ali and pals are finished tossing the fruits and nuts aside, we’ll see a whole new dynamic in the Anglican-Roman/Orthodox relationship.
“You know, EWTN could take a lead in bringing this type of news to a broader audience by covering these events and by inviting Orthodox clergy and laity for comments and discussions so both sides can lear from each other. I think that would be mutually beneficial.”
I think that would be a superb idea. You doubtless remember that EWTN did that when +BXVI visit the Phanar.
EWTN runs strictly on donations. To provide commentary after the address would have entailed studio time, providing accomodations for guest commentators, etc. Right now, they are -$600,000 in debt. Perhaps a generous donation might provide the resources needed for a program on dialogue between the two Churches. I am not being sarcastic; just practical.
All of us are most indebted to Mother Angelica who launched this worlwide network. Thanks to EWTN, I have been able to follow live coverage of several major events over the years with Bartholomew I and JPII and Bartholomew I and Benedict XVI. Mother would be most appreciative of any donation you give.
Yes, this is an excellent idea. Here again, anytime the pope travels, Vatican Radio provides coverage with EWTN picking up the live feed. On those occasions, commentary is generally given, oftentimes with some authority from the other faith.
In rechecking EWTN's planned coverage of this address, I just noticed that 1/2 hour was allocated. Apparently, Vatican Radio did not make them aware of the Patriarch's address - or - quite possibly, not even VR was informed in advance. Nevertheless, they televised the entire address. It was beautifully delivered and well received.
Well I don't have that kind of money to give away and even if I did I would not give it to them because, frankly, I find their routine programming somewhat dry and uninspiring.
If they are in the red, it's because they do not generate the interest and show what people want to see. A little experimentation might help to see what "sells."
If the Church is so interested in reunion, why doesn't the Church allocate some of that money to EWTN for the greater good of brining the East and the West closer together instead of doing it every now and then. After all, the Vatican is not exactly short of money, is it? Given EWTN's outreach and potential for growth, I think that would be a prudent thing for the Church to do.
Otherwise, everything is done behind closed doors, away from the laity. The Orthodox are not used to "pay, pray and obey" approach but rather take an active part in deciding who their bishop will be. I think one shoud take that into consideration too. Therefore, brining the Orthodox to share their faith and views is fudamental for ensuring grass-roots support for another reunion on that level. Otherwise we will have another faux reunion of Florence.
Of course I do. I have it recorded. Besides an awful choir, unfitting the dignity of the Patriarchal presence, the EWTN anchor (Arroyo is his name i believe) actually distanced himself from the Vatican-provided commentator's statements (apparently because of some angry intercessions by viewers), without elaborating.
This is not the way to bring both sides closer, by sweeping under the rug that which separates us whether that is true or simply human perception. Arroyo's co-host a Catholic priest saved the day by making positive statements and basically saying the two Churches were the "same" for all practical purposes.
So, while on the patriarchal level, these issues are well known and understood, on the lower clergy and laity level they are not and apparently nothing is being done to bring it to them, except sporadic new-sflashes, essentially public shows, without much substantive dialogue.
Televised EWTN events sowing papal mass, or similar occasions, flash shots of Eastern clergy who have been invited to partake in attendance, without any commentary. EWTN is dry and unimaginative in my opinion. It lacks enthusiasm you would expect, considering the scope of their reach.
I belive that contacts between “experts” brought little or nothing to ecumanical cause.
And I thing that, as you said, it is right time to let people and lower clergy meet and discuss the issue.
And I thing that, as you said, it is right time to let people and lower clergy meet and discuss the issue
I don’t know — is it wise to have sensitive discussions broadcast? though perhaps it is only by talking and discussing civilly with each other that we can truly understand and move closer.
Is it any more senstitive than broadcasting of the Pope's visit to the EP? The picture of the two of them holding hands up in the air became iconic and probably did more than all the discussions done in private to bring the laity of the West and the East to feel closer than ever.
Good point. It's healthy for both the west and east to see them together, be it in prayer or at an extraordinary event such as this synod. There is much ignorance in the west about the east. In his Epiphany homily last night, the pastor reminded us that the "Church" is Eastern .. it was born in Jerusalem and spread from there. From time to time I remind fellow Catholics of this fact. I ask them a simple question - where was Peter between the time he was in Jerusalem and Rome. Most are clueless; they have no idea he served as Bishop of Antioch. If anything, such news becomes an epiphany for them ;-)
Kolokotronis posted a link to the Patriarch's presentation on another thread that I can't locate at this moment. Here is a link to the Vatican's site:
It's a wonderful speech. Enjoy!