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Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill: metropolitan Hilarion (Moscow), “Joint statement, a vade mecum for action”

“A lot has been said about this being the first meeting in history, about such meeting having never happened before. But I think the most important thing is the content of the meeting”. The importance of the “Joint Statement” that was signed in Cuba by the Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia and by the Pope is highlighted by the metropolitan bishop Hilarion of Volokolamsk, president of the Department for External Relations of the Patriarchate of Moscow, who, nearly two weeks later, takes stock of the meeting in an interview with “Interfax-Religion”, which the Patriarchate sent to the agency SIR this morning to relay it in Italy. “Of course it is nice to see the Pope and the Patriarch together, talking in a fraternal setting, smiling to each other. But the most important thing is the substantial content of the meeting, which is fully reflected in the Joint Statement signed by the Pope and by the Patriarch. I think the Statement will stay on, as a beacon, for a long time, for the two Christian traditions, the Orthodox and the Catholic one, to find their bearings. Important words have been said in the Statement, about the Gospel as common grounds for the faithful of the East and West, and about how to practice the evangelical commandments in modern living conditions. This Statement is a guide, a vade mecum for action”.

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