Cardinal Kaspar at the LWF Assembly

Started by Charles_Austin, July 21, 2010, 08:19:16 PM

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Charles_Austin

     The retiring head of the Vatican's Pontifical Office for Promoting Christian Unity told the Assembly he felt "deep emotion and gratitude" looking back on "these years of such rich and enriching cooperation with the Lutheran World Federation."
    Cardinal Walter Kaspar said "Lutheran Catholic relations have been since the beginning of our international dialogue...in my heart and will remain in my heart." Kaspar retires this year after heading the Vatican's office for Christian Unity since 2001.
    Addressing the Eleventh Assembly of the Lutheran World Federation, the cardinal said the 1999 signing of a Lutheran-Roman Catholic "Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification," a "milestone of the ecumenical movement."
    Referring to his recent, "Harvesting the Fruits," a book about the ecumenical movement, Kaspar said "I was more than surprised to see such a rich harvest and that we have achieved much more than we could even dream before. There has been no ecumenical winter."
    Kaspar paid special tribute to LWF President Mark Hanson, presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, and LWF General Secretary Ishmael Noko as especially "good friends" of Lutheran-Roman Catholic relations.
    But the ecumenical agenda is still unfinished according to the Vatican official. "We have every reason to continue and even to intensify and deepen our dialogues," Kaspar said.
    Referring to the LWF Assembly theme, "Give us this day our daily bread," Kaspar the millions of people who lack daily bread are "our common responsibility," and said that Lutherans and Roman Catholics "can no longer afford our differences" when it came to helping people in need.
    "Our dialogues must continue," he said, "but at the same time we have to reflect on how to engage more in common cultural, social, and environmental projects."


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