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Author Topic: Pope To Return Bones Of Sts John Chrysostom & Gregory  (Read 1385 times) Average Rating: 0
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Those who ignore history tend to repeat it.

« on: October 21, 2004, 09:38:05 PM »

Finally!  After 800 years!

 2004.10.21 AP:

Pope makes gesture to Orthodox Church


VATICAN CITY -- The pope won't be going to Istanbul, but in a gesture to
the Orthodox Church he is returning the relics of two saints that were
seized by Crusaders 800 years ago, Vatican officials said Thursday.

Ecumenical Patriarch Barthlomew I of Constantinople, the spiritual leader
of Orthodox Christians, had asked for the return of the relics when he met
with Pope John Paul II at the Vatican in June. At that time, he also
invited the pope to visit the seat of the Orthodox Church in Istanbul.

Because of the 84-year-old pontiff's frail condition, the Vatican has
reduced his foreign travel and he won't make the trip to Istanbul. John
Paul visited Istanbul in 1979.

Instead, a Vatican delegation will return the relics at the end of November
for the Orthodox feast day of Saint Andrew, officials said.

The relics - the bones of the patriarchs Saints John Chrysostom and Gregory
Nazianzen - disappeared from Constantinople, the modern day Istanbul, in
the sack of 1204 by Crusaders. They have been kept in St. Peter's Basilica.

The patriarch's June visit was intended to underline both sides' commitment
to Christian unity and to restart stalled theological talks.

Christianity split into Western and Eastern branches in the 11th century
over the growing power of the papacy, an issue that remains a principal
source of division.
During his talks with Barthlomew, the pope had restated his remorse for the
sacking of Constantinople that contributed to the collapse of the Byzantine
Empire about three centuries later.



Oh Lord, Save thy people and bless thine inheritance.
Grant victory to the Orthodox Christians over their adversaries.
And by virtue of thy Cross preserve thy habitation.
Donna Rose
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« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2004, 09:53:59 PM »

Nice! Great news! Smiley Thanks for posting, Orthodoc.

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« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2004, 10:40:36 PM »

I am 'speechless' (which is most uncharacteristic). We'll miss this pope when he's gone.


"Religion is a neurobiological illness and Orthodoxy is its cure." - Fr. John S. Romanides
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« Reply #3 on: October 22, 2004, 01:59:47 AM »

I am very happy to hear about this, just as I was happy to hear about all of the other kind gestures of Pope John Paul II to the Orthodox Church, but I can't help but wonder why it is that His Holiness has been on this "spree" of giving these holy relics, icons, etc., back to the Orthodox Church. I am really curious what has been the underlying motivation behind all of these situations.

Has the Pope made any public commentary about this (or any of the other instances in the past) and if so, where can I read about them?

We'll miss this pope when he's gone.

I agree with you on that Demetri, because there is no guarentee that his successor will continue doing anything like this.

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St. John Cassian

« Reply #4 on: October 22, 2004, 02:14:58 AM »

I think you answered your own question.  I think this Pope is aware that the next one will likely not be as ammenable to Orthodoxy, and so he's doing everything he can in what are most likely his final months to mend the fences as best he can.

That, and I think he's actually sincere, and persuaded that the relics ought be returned, so he's doing the right thing.


"Do leave off speaking of me as an ill-educated and uncouth and unfriendly man, not even worthy to live." - St. Gregory the Theologian in a Letter to St. Basil the Great
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« Reply #5 on: October 22, 2004, 02:21:51 AM »

I think he's trying to do as much as possible because his successor will not be from eastern Europe and probably won't understand the Orthodox.  I think he keeps his mouth shut about it because he doesn't want to anger the triumphantist latins.
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