Christian Credibility Demands Unity, Pope Insists

VATICAN CITY, APR. 23, 2001 ( In order that the proclamation of the Gospel be credible, Christians must regain their lost unity, John Paul II said in a letter sent to the European ecumenical meeting, held in Strasbourg, France, from April 19-22.

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“The unity for which the Lord prayed in the Cenacle is a condition for the credibility of the Christian witness,” the Pope wrote to Cardinal Miloslav Vlk, outgoing president of the Council of European Episcopal Conferences.

“Today, more than ever, we must bring our reflection to bear on this profound relation, which plays a decisive role on the impact that the Christian message can have in the world,” the letter said.

“A clear proclamation of the Gospel is especially urgent in Europe,” the papal message stressed. “Woven with different cultures, traditions and values linked to the countries that make it up, Europe can be neither understood nor built without taking into account the roots that are its original identity, nor can it build itself in rejecting the Christian spirituality that permeates it.”

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