*** The Pope’s visit to Moscow in the agenda does not appear
Moscow. 15 Aug. INTERFAX – the Ukrainian issue will be one of the topics of discussion during the upcoming visit of Secretary of state of the Holy see cardinal Pietro parolin in Moscow 20-24 August.
“Not removed from the agenda of the Ukrainian question, which remains problematic in relations between the two Churches due to the periodic destructive actions of Greek Catholics in Ukraine, and also has a humanitarian dimension”, – said the portal “Interfax-Religion” on Tuesday, Secretary of the Synodal Department for external Church relations for inter-Christian relations hieromonk Stefan (Igumnov).
He stressed that “the Russian Orthodox Church appreciate the Vatican’s position on this issue, which does not allow to use the Holy see to speculation with the aim of further escalation of the Ukrainian crisis and to bring the conflict in purely religious plane.”
The priest said that the visit comes amid intensified after a meeting of Patriarch and Pope of relations between the Russian Orthodox Church and the Vatican and “will mark the next stage of interaction, which develops in different directions”.
“The Russian Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church is the largest Christian communities in the world. Their leaders are not afraid to take on responsibility reputable to influence the processes that happen in society today to raise their voice in defense of traditional morality, in support of Christians suffering in various parts of the world, primarily in the middle East, and a number of other issues, from the successful solution of which depends the future of humanity,” said father Stephan.
Answering the question about the possibility of discussions of prospects of the visit of Pope Francis in Moscow, the priest recalled a recent interview of the Vatican’s Secretary of state, in which he stated that he did not intend to talk about it with the Patriarch during his visit.