Belarusian Archimandrite: Children of Christ Cannot Wait For Theologists to Cure the Schism
Archmandrite Savva (Mazhuka) and archmandrite Amvrosiy (Shautsou) of St. Nicholas monastery have returned from a prayer pilgrimage to the Taize monastery in Burgundy, France, where an ecumenical conference took place on 23 July, dedicated to the monastic vocation in the modern world.
The monk told on the pravmir.ru portal about the bewilderment of fellow Orthodoxes with him visiting a Catholic churh without Orthodox relics and about how we should contact with other Chrisitan denominations.
“You are not talking with Catholics? They are talking with you – through books, films and as your neighbors. An Orthodox should not enter a Catholic church? I will not understand you if you do not visit Notre Dame while being in Paris or if you do not pray at St. Nicholas relics while being in Bari. They will even allow us to serve an Orthodox liturgy near the relics though it is hard to believe that we would allow Catholics to serve a mess near St. Seraphim”, – emphasyzes archmandrite Savva.
The monk also talks about the absurdity of disrtust between different confessions: “While reading the biographies of our story protagonists I think – why did you quarrel, why did we need all these wars and blood? The most intelligent people can not give answer to that question”.
“Taize is a ministry of reconciliation – the idea expressed by Apostle Paul himself who believed that the essence of Christian Gospel consists of it. The Christendom is shattered and is full of grudge and mutual accusations. We cannot pray together, to serve a liturgy together – there are lots of differences accumulated through centuries – we have different customs, difficult calendars and, simply, a habit of seeing each other as aliens and competitors”, – states archmandrite Savva after visiting Taize three years ago.
According to him, every Christian should learn to communicate, try to understand and to be understood. “We have to learn from others. But have a lot to share, too. We have to pvercome the isolation, the fear and the sense of self-importance. We must understand that the ministry if reconciliation is a duty of every Christian”, – writes he.
“Our churchesare divided, our people are distrustful, our politicians are expressing hatred. We, the children of Christ cannot just wait till our theologists and hierarchs will mend the situation, till they will heal centennial wounds”, – notices the archmandrite.
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