Recent East-West Dialogue on Papal Primacy in Ravenna


The Ravenna dialogue between the Eastern Orthodox Churches and the Catholic Church has yielded a statement.

However, the Ravenna document does not settle questions about the power the Pope enjoys as a consequence of that primacy. In fact, the members of the Joint International Commission for Theological Dialogue noted in their concluding statement that Catholic and Orthodox theologians disagree “on the interpretation of the historical evidence from this era regarding the prerogatives of the bishop of Rome as protos,” or first among the patriarchs.

“While the fact of primacy at the universal level is accepted by both East and West,” the Ravenna statement continued, “there are differences of understanding with regard to the manner in which it is to be exercised, and also with regard to its scriptural and theological foundations.”

Cardinal Kasper told Vatican Radio that the Ravenna document will for the basis for further talks. In future meetings, he said, “we have have to go on to clarify the details.”

Read “Ecumenical talks reach partial accord on papal primacy” from Catholic World News.

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