- Dec 13, 2019
Extolling religious freedom on Monday, Pope Francis said, ““What we are called to do as believers is to commit ourselves to the equal dignity of all, in the name of the Merciful One who created us.”
Patriarch Kirill of the Russian Orthodox Church, although not attending the Human Fraternity Meeting, sent a message to the conference condemning using religion as a basis for violence.
Ukrainian Orthodox leaders on Saturday approved the creation of a unified church independent of the Moscow Patriarchate and elected a leader to head that new church — a move that could exponentially raise tensions with neighboring Russia.
Ukraine’s president on Thursday hailed the announcement by Orthodoxy’s Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople that it will move forward with granting Ukrainian clerics independence from the Russian Orthodox Church.
Pope Francis will be in the Italian city of Bari on Saturday, hosting an ecumenical prayer for peace in the Middle East.
Patriarch Kirill of the Russian Orthodox Church says only religion can overcome terrorism, but his top deputy is skeptical about unity between Catholic and Orthodox Christians.