Pope Francis explains "The union between all Christians, although incomplete, is based on the one baptism and is sealed by the blood..." Full Text


St. Peter's Square
Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Catechesis on the Apostolic Journey to Romania

Dear brothers and sisters, good morning!

Last weekend I made an apostolic trip to Romania, invited by the President and the Madam Prime Minister. I renew my thanks to them and extend it to the other civil and ecclesiastical Authorities and to all those who have collaborated in the realization of this visit. Above all, I give thanks to God who allowed the Successor of Peter to return to that country, twenty years after the visit of St. John Paul II.

In summary, as the motto of the Journey announced, I urged to "walk together". And it is my joy to be able to do it not from afar, or from above, but myself walking among the Romanian people, as a pilgrim in his land.

The various meetings highlighted the value and the need to walk together both among Christians, on the level of faith and charity, and between citizens, on the level of civil commitment.

As Christians, we have the grace to live a season of fraternal relations between the different Churches. In Romania most of the faithful belong to the Orthodox Church, currently led by Patriarch Daniel, to whom my fraternal and grateful thought goes. The Catholic community, both "Greek" and "Latin", is alive and active. The union between all Christians, although incomplete, is based on the one baptism and is sealed by the blood and suffering suffered together in the dark times of persecution, particularly in the last century under the atheistic regime. There is also another Lutheran community that also professes faith in Jesus Christ, and is on good terms with Orthodox and Catholics.

With the Patriarch and the Holy Synod of the Romanian Orthodox Church we had a very cordial meeting, in which I reiterated the Catholic Church's desire to walk together in reconciled memory and towards fuller unity, which the Romanian people invoked prophetically during the visit of St. John Paul II. This important ecumenical dimension of the journey culminated in the solemn Prayer of the Our Father, inside the new, imposing Orthodox cathedral of Bucharest. This was a moment of strong symbolic value, because the Our Father is the Christian prayer par excellence, the common heritage of all the baptized. No one can say "my Father" and "your Father"; no: "Our Father", the common heritage of all the baptized. We have shown that unity does not take away legitimate diversity. May the Holy Spirit lead us to live ever more as children of God and brothers among us.

As a Catholic Community we have celebrated three Eucharistic Liturgies. The first in the Cathedral of Bucharest, May 31, the feast of the Visitation of the Virgin Mary, an icon of the Church on a journey of faith and charity. The second Eucharist in the Shrine of uleumuleu Ciuc, destination of many pilgrims. There, the Holy Mother of God gathers the faithful people in the variety of languages, cultures and traditions. And the third celebration was the Divine Liturgy in Blaj, center of the Greek-Catholic Church in Romania, with the beatification of seven Greek Catholic Catholic bishops, witnesses of the freedom and mercy that come from the Gospel. One of these new blesseds, Mgr. Iuliu Hossu, during his imprisonment wrote: "God sent us into this darkness of suffering to forgive and pray for the conversion of all". Thinking of the terrible tortures to which they were subjected, these words are a testimony of mercy.
Particularly intense and festive was the meeting with young people and families, held in Iaşi, an ancient city and an important cultural center, a crossroads between the West and the East. A place that invites you to open roads on which to walk together, in the richness of diversity, in a freedom that does not cut the roots but draws you in a creative way. This meeting also had a Marian character and ended with the entrusting of young people and families to the Holy Mother of God.

The last stop on the journey was a visit to the Roma community of Blaj. In that city the Roma are very numerous, and for this I wanted to greet them and renew the appeal against all discrimination and for the respect of people of any ethnicity, language and religion.

Dear brothers and sisters, we thank God for this apostolic journey, and we ask Him, through the intercession of the Virgin Mary, for it to bear abundant fruit for Romania and for the Church in those lands.
Greetings in Various Languages:
Je salue cordialement les pèlerins venant de France, en particulier les jeunes de Colmar, Paris, Vabre, les diocésains de Besançon et les membres de la pastorale des personnes handicapées du diocèse de Vannes. A quelques jours de la fête de la Pentecôte, je vous invite, vous aussi, à marcher ensemble sur les routes de la foi, et à accueillir la venue de l’Esprit Saint afin qu’il vous aide à être des témoins authentiques de l’amour du Seigneur pour tous. Que Dieu vous bénisse !
I greet the English-speaking pilgrims and visitors taking part in today’s Audience, especially those from England, Scotland, Malta, China, Japan, Malaysia, Korea, Canada and the United States of America. I offer a special greeting to the members of the United Nations Women’s Guild of Rome together with my prayerful good wishes for their fiftieth anniversary. As we prepare to celebrate the Solemnity of Pentecost, I invoke upon all of you and your families a rich outpouring of the gifts of the Holy Spirit.
Herzlich grüße ich die Brüder und Schwestern deutscher Sprache, insbesondere die Gruppe des Vereins RollOn Austria zusammen mit Pilgern aus der Diözese Innsbruck in Begleitung ihres Bischofs Hermann Glettler. Der Heilige Geist, der uns zu Brüdern und Schwestern Christi und zu geliebten Kindern des einen Vaters macht, komme auf euch herab und bleibe bei euch allezeit.
Saludo cordialmente a los peregrinos de lengua española venidos de España y Latinoamérica. Ante la proximidad de la fiesta de Pentecostés, pidamos a Dios el don del Espíritu Santo para que sea Él quien nos impulse a “caminar juntos” como hermanos en la construcción de una sociedad más fraterna y en la búsqueda de la unidad plena de todos los cristianos. Que Dios los bendiga.
Dirijo uma saudação cordial aos peregrinos de língua portuguesa, em particular aos fiéis de Lisboa e ao grupo de magistrados brasileiros. Queridos amigos, ao preparar-nos para a festa de Pentecostes, lembremos que é com a força que recebemos do Espírito Santo que podemos ser verdadeiras testemunhas do Evangelho no mundo. Desça sobre vós e vossas famílias a bênção de Deus.
أُرحّبُ بالحجّاجِ الناطقينَ باللّغةِ العربيّة، وخاصةً بالقادمينَ من الشرق الأوسط. أيّها الإخوةُ والأخواتُ الأعزّاء، كونوا معززين لثقافة اللقاء التي تُبطل اللامبالاة وتُبطل الانقسام وتسمح بأن نتغنّى بقوّة مراحم الرب. ليبارككم الرب!
Pozdrawiam polskich pielgrzymów. Drodzy bracia i siostry, dziękuję wam za duchowe towarzyszenie i modlitwę podczas mojej podróży do Rumunii. Zbliża się uroczystość Pięćdziesiątnicy. Otwórzmy umysły i serca na działanie Ducha Świętego w nas, aby nas uświęcał i czynił świadkami Chrystusa wobec świata, w którym żyjemy. Starajmy się służyć braciom, korzystając z duchowych darów, jakie otrzymaliśmy. Światło i moc Ducha Parakleta niech stale Wam towarzyszy! Z serca wam błogosławię.
Next Saturday, June 8th, will be the fifth anniversary of the meeting, here in the Vatican, of the Presidents of Israel and Palestine with me and Patriarch Bartholomew. At 13.00 we are invited to dedicate "a minute to peace" - of prayer, for believers; of reflection, for those who do not believe -: all together for a more fraternal world. Thanks to the international Catholic Action that promotes this initiative.

* * *

I warmly welcome the Italian-speaking pilgrims.

I am pleased to welcome the Priests of the Diocese of Padua; the members of the Opera Don Calabria; and the Servants of Mary the Minister of the Sick.

I greet the Parishes, especially that of Irsina; the faithful of the Fortore pastoral area, of the Diocese of Benevento; married couples, accompanied by the Bishop, Mons. Andrea Turazzi; the delegation of the pilgrimage on foot from Macerata to Loreto which will be held next Saturday; the participants in the Tournament of Parishes: Coppa San Giovanni Paolo II; the professional Local Police Association of Italy; and educational institutions, particularly that of Serracapriola.

I am particularly interested in young people, the elderly, the sick and newlyweds. Next Sunday we will celebrate the solemnity of Pentecost. May the Lord find you all ready to welcome the abundant outpouring of the Holy Spirit. The grace of his gifts instills in you new vitality to the faith, reinvigorates hope and gives operative strength to charity.
Full Text + Image Source: Shared from Vatican.va - Unofficial Translation