- Jun 1, 2020
The second highest-ranking official in the Vatican, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, is preparing for his August trip to Russia. The historic event represents a key step in Pope Francis’s courtship with President Putin, with one eye pointed toward ambitious ecumenical possibilities with the Orthodox Church and the other fixed on the Middle East.
Upon hearing that thousands of people in the Ukraine joined the funeral procession of Cardinal Lubomyr Husar, Pope Francis sent a second message of condolence to the cardinal’s successor saying that he was “one of the highest and most respected moral authorities of the Ukrainian people in recent decades.”
In a first-ever joint statement on International Women’s Day, the leaders of Cyprus’s Christian and Muslim faithful pledged to work with authorities and help end violence against women and girls. The leaders said Christianity and Islam condemn violence against women and that it is their religious duty to stand united against it.
In a joint statement Catholic and Orthodox leaders called Europe to embrace its religious roots in this difficult time for the Old Continent. “We believe that Europe needs more than ever the breath of faith in Christ and the hope that it provides,” they wrote. “If you are cut off from your roots, you will come adrift.”
“Your sufferings are our sufferings. I join you in praying for an end to the conflict and for God’s closeness to those who have endured so much, especially children, the sick and the elderly,” Pope Francis told representatives of the Oriental Orthodox churches.