CWN - Georgian Orthodox clerics refused to attend a Mass celebrated by Pope Francis in Tbilisi on Saturday, October 1.
Vatican ecumenical officials had hoped that Georgian Orthodox Patriarch Ilia II would attend the papal liturgy, after the Pontiff had joined Orthodox clerics for an ecumenical ceremony the previous day. But the Georgian Orthodox patriarchate issued a statement indicating that they would not join Catholics in worship “as long as dogmatic differences exist.”
Greg Burke, the director of the Vatican press office, disclosed that Orthodox officials had informed the papal party of their decision not to participate on late on Friday, the day before the Mass. Burke said that the Vatican accepted the decision.