Wednesday, January 27, 2010

East and West: Will the thousand year division end in our lifetime?

"The Pope Is the First Among the Patriarchs" Just How Remains to Be Seen -Chiesa News

With Benedict XVI, for the first time in history, the Orthodox have agreed to discuss the primacy of the bishop of Rome, according to the model of the first millennium, when the Church was undivided...
There are some who say that ecumenism has entered a phase of retreat and chill. But as soon as one that looks to the East, the facts say the opposite. Relations with the Orthodox Churches have never been so promising as they have since Joseph Ratzinger has been pope.

First in Belgrade in 2006, and then in Ravenna in 2007, the international mixed commission for theological dialogue between the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Churches started meeting again.
And what rose to the top of the discussion was precisely the question that most divides East and West: the primacy of the successor of Peter in the universal Church.
Since then, the discussion on controversial points has advanced at an accelerated pace. And it has started to examine, above all, how the Churches of East and West interpreted the role of the bishop of Rome during the first millennium, when they were still united.

The full article reveals some encouraging signs that the discussions are serious, positive, and in good faith. They seem to be "getting traction".

It would be pretty nice if the churches of the East and West would find their way to reunite before Jesus returns. I'm pretty sure He'd be happy to see that sort of progress.

It could almost be like a surprise party for Him. -except He's always known that it was going to happen.

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