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Pope meets with Aram I, head of the Catholicos of the Armenian Church of Cilicia


A prayer for Christian Unity. This is why Pope Francis and Aram I, head of the Catholicos of the Apostolic Armenian Church of Cilicia, prayed at the Vatican's Redemptoris Mater Chapel. 

It was one of three gatherings held throughout the day, to improve the relationship between both Churches. 

"Your Holiness’s commitment to the cause of Christian unity is known to all. You have been
especially active in the World Council of Churches.”

Before an entire delegation of Catholicos the Pope highlighted the trials and suffering Armenians have endured as a people. He also mentioned Aram's role in promoting dialogue between the Catholic Church with its Oriental Orthodox counterparts. 
As the Middle East faces significant political and social changes, his Holiness Aram I reiterated that despite the instability, Christians will continue to practice their faith and demand full rights at citizens. He also talked about the role the Church plays in helping those in need. 

Catholicos of the Apostolic Armenian Church of Cilicia
"With the poor, the marginalized, oppressed and victims of injustice, under no circumstances should the Church compromise this sacred vocation.” 

Of course, there was also time for some gifts. Aram I gave the Pope a replica of the Catholicos Gospel. The Pope gave him a framed copy of an ancient papyrus with one of the letters of St. Peter. Afterwards they talked about how both their gifts, reflect their roots. 

Catholicos of the Apostolic Armenian Church of Cilicia
"Because we cannot live without our roots. We need our roots for our inspiration.” 

As part of Aram's three day visit, he also met with Cardinal Kurt Koch, who leads the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity.