Pope to Church of Scotland: 'The Lord Is Calling Us to Overcome Old Prejudices'

Says Common Christian Witness Is Necessary in Globalized World

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“In our globalized and often confused world, a common Christian witness is a necessary requisite for the effectiveness of our efforts to evangelize.”

Pope Francis made this statement this morning in the Vatican when speaking to the moderator of the Church of Scotland, Rev. John P. Chalmers, and other representatives present.

The Pontiff told the delegation he was happy to meet with them and to reaffirm “our common commitment” to the Gospel and the cause of Christian unity.

The present state of ecumenical relations in Scotland, the Jesuit Pope noted, “clearly shows that what we, as Christians, hold in common is greater than all that divides us.” 

On this basis, he added: “The Lord is calling us to seek ever more effective ways to overcome old prejudices and to find new forms of understanding and cooperation.»

Faith and Christian witness, the Pope noted, are presently confronted by such great challenges.

Only by working together, he said, will we “be able effectively to serve the human family” and “enable the light of Christ to reach every dark corner of our hearts and of our world.”

Speaking off the cuff in Spanish, the Holy Father expressed his extreme sorrow regarding the execution of more than 20 Coptic Christians in Egypt.

“They only said: ‘Jesus, help me.’ They were killed for the sole fact of being Christians,» Francis said, noting how Rev. Chalmers referenced the bloodshed taking place in the Land of Jesus.

«The blood of our Christian brothers is a witness that shouts,» the Pope said. «It doesn’t matter if they are Catholic, Orthodox, Coptic, Lutheran: they are Christians!” 


On ZENIT’s Web page:

Full Translation: http://www.zenit.org/en/articles/pope-s-address-to-john-p-chalmers-and-representatives-of-the-church-of-scotland

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Deborah Castellano Lubov

Deborah Castellano Lubov is Senior Vatican & Rome Correspondent for ZENIT; author of 'The Other Francis' ('L'Altro Francesco') featuring interviews with those closest to the Pope and preface by Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Parolin (currently published in 5 languages); Deborah is also NBC & MSNBC Vatican Analyst. She often covers the Pope's travels abroad, often from the Papal Flight (including for historic trips such as to Abu Dhabi and Japan & Thailand), and has also asked him questions on the return-flight press conference on behalf of the English-speaking press present. Lubov has done much TV & radio commentary, including for NBC, Sky, EWTN, BBC, Vatican Radio, AP, Reuters and more. She also has contributed to various books on the Pope and has written for various Catholic publications. For 'The Other Francis': http://www.gracewing.co.uk/page219.html or https://www.amazon.com/Other-Francis-Everything-They-about/dp/0852449348/

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