CWN - One of the leading theologians of the Orthodox world has said that he sees prosecpts for “quick progress” toward full Christian unity under Pope Francis.

Metropolitan Ioannis of Pergamon, the co-chairman of the Joint International Commission for Theological Dialogue, told the Vatican Insider that Pope Francis has brought new excitement to ecumenical dialogue with the Orthodox world. “The way in which he is carrying out his ministry removes the many apprehensions and fears of the past.”

Metropolitan Ioannis pointed particularly to the Pope’s statement, during his recent visit to Constantinople, that the Catholic Church “does not intend to impose any conditions except that of shared profession of faith.” He said that in the past, “the Orthodox believed that the Pope wanted to subjugate them. And now we see this is not in any way true.”

The Orthodox theologian said that ecumenical discussions should now focus on whether the shared profession of faith would include doctrinal teachings that have been developed by the Catholic Church since the schism—as he put it, “dogmatic definitions which were established unilaterally by the Catholic Church.”

Metropolitan Ioannis also admitted that ecumenical progress could be delayed by opposition within the Orthodox world. He said that some influential Orthodox leaders are “adopting the old attitudes of hostility” toward Catholicism and toward the papacy.

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Teachings of Christ

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God." (John 3:16-18 ESV)

Transfiguration

You were transfigured on the mountain, O Christ God, * showing Your glory to Your Disciples as far as they were able to bear it. * Through the prayers of the Mother of God, * let Your everlasting Light shine also upon us sinners. * O Giver of Light, glory to You! (Troparion - Tone 7)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.

You were transfigured upon the mountain, O Christ God, * and Your Disciples beheld Your glory as far as they could receive it, * so that when they would see You crucified, * they would understand that You suffered willingly; * and they would preach to the world * that You are truly the radiance of the Father. (Kontakion - Tone 7)

Random Proverb

"When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom." (Proverbs 11:2 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

The Seraph could not touch the fire's coal with his fingers, but just brought it close to Isaiah's mouth: the Seraph did not hold it, Isaiah did not consume it, but us our Lord has allowed to do both. 

St. Ephraim the Syrian