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Pope during General Audience: Our Church unity and diversity is a God-given gift

2013-09-25

During his catechesis for Wednesday's General Audience, Pope Francis explained that unity is the fundamental aspect that define the Church. The Pope added that the rich diversity of cultures within the Church is an example of how we canovercome differences through the shared belief in our faith. The Pope made a special appeal to pray for Christians under the threat of persecution.   


The Pope explained that to keep the Church as a great family, we must show our appreciation for this unity, and to cherish the harmony that comes from our diversity. 

SUMMARY OF THE CATECHESIS IN ENGLISH: 

Dear Brothers and Sisters: 

In the Creed, we confess that the Church is "one.” When we consider the rich diversity of languages, cultures and peoples present in the Church throughout the world, we realize that this unity is a God-given gift, grounded in our common Baptism and our sharing in the Church’s one faith and sacramental life. Like a great family, we are united to all our brothers and sisters in Christ, wherever they may be. 

We might ask ourselves how much we appreciate and express in our daily lives, and particularly in our prayer, this reality of our unity and solidarity in the communion of the Church. The world needs our witness to God’s plan for the unity, reconciliation and peace of the whole human family. Let us ask the Lord to enable us, and Christians everywhere, to work to overcome our tensions and divisions, to strive, as Saint Paul bids us, to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace (cf. Eph 4:3), and to cherish the harmony which the same Spirit creates from the richness of our diversity. 

I offer an affectionate greeting to all the English-speaking pilgrims present at today’s Audience, including those from England, Scotland, Ireland, Denmark, Norway, South Africa, Uganda, Australia, New Zealand, India, China, Japan, Sri Lanka, South Korea, Vietnam, Canada and the United States. My particular greeting goes to the delegation from Sophia University in Tokyo, the new seminarians of the Venerable English College, the participants in the Institute for Continuing Theological Education at the Pontifical North American College, and the priests’ pilgrimage from the Archdiocese of Colombo. May your stay in the Eternal City confirm you in love for Christ and his Church. God bless you all!


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