Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Zenit News Agency (http://www.zenit.org/)
An old winter chill in Rome-Moscow relations seems to be thawing, with profound consequences for Europe and the entire world.
(Archbishop Hilarion) 'We want to promote the idea of the unity between the West and Russia on the basis of common Christian roots'.
WASHINGTON, D.C. (Zenit.org) - Things are moving on the Eastern front. And more movement may be coming soon, as an old winter chill in Rome-Moscow relations seems to be thawing, with profound consequences for Europe and the entire world.
Vatican observers have been following these developments with great attention. "For Rome and Moscow, It's Spring Again," the respected Italian Vatican observer Sandro Magister noted in a Dec. 11 column.
This improvement in relations is due in part to many quiet steps taken by the Vatican under the direction of Cardinal Walter Kasper, the Vatican's chief ecumenist, who led the Vatican delegation to a week-long theological dialogue in Cyprus, and by Archbishop Antonio Mennini, the Pope's very able nuncio to Moscow.
Magister, however, was commenting on two key recent events: (1) the upgrading of relations between the Holy See and Russia, and (2) the publication in Russia, for the first time ever, of a collection of Benedict XVI's homilies.
And this "springtime" has a goal, Magister argues: "the defense of the Christian tradition" in Europe and around the world.