Sunday, January 21, 2007

Angelus: Week of Prayer for Christian Unity

The Holy Father focused on the upcoming week of prayer in today's Angelus address.
The Pontiff said that this year’s theme was prepared by “faithful from Umlazi, South Africa, a very poor city, where AIDS has reached pandemic proportions and where there are very few human hopes. But the Risen Christ is hope for everybody, especially for Christians. Heirs to past divisions, they have tried on this occasion to launch an appeal: Christ can do everything, he “makes the deaf hear and (the) mute speak" (Mk 7, 37),” can instil in Christians the ardent desire to listen to and communicate with one another as well as speak together with Him the language of mutual love.”

Talking about the ecumenical commitment to Christian unity, Benedict XVI stressed that such a commitment is not limited to the experts but is for everyone. “Ecumenism is a deep dialogical experience; it is listening and talking to one another, knowing each better. It is a task that everyone can accomplish, especially in terms of spiritual ecumenism based on prayer and sharing that are now possible between Christians. I hope that the yearning for unity, translated into prayer and fraternal collaboration to alleviate man’s suffering, can spread more and more at the parish level as well as in Church movements and religious institutes.”
(Emphasis added) And ... Societies of Apostolic Life as wel! ... Ecumenical (as well as inter-faith) dialogue is part and parcel of the mission of the Paulist Fathers.

[And at the very end of the address, the Pope added the following ...
In greeting Italian pilgrims, the Pontiff cited the promoters of the ‘Cambia gioco’ [Change the Game] project, who in the city of Lecce invited children to give up their toy guns.

“I congratulate you for this initiative,” the Pope said, and “I want to broaden the appeal: Let us keep children from the contagion of violence!”
I trust that the Holy Father has not heard of Grand Theft Auto! Toy guns are peanuts!]

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