ADDRESS OF PAUL VI
TO A DELEGATION
OF THE RUSSIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH
Thursday, 3 July 1975
Your Eminence and dear brothers of the Russian Orthodox Church,
To all of you we say: “Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Cor. 1, 3).
We cordially welcome you after the completion of the fourth encounter in a series of providential meetings between the Catholic Church and the Russian Orthodox Church. We know that you have dedicated yourselves with diligence and fidelity to the examination of the theme: “The Christian Proclamation of salvation in a world of transformation”. We realize what an important and complex subject that you have treated, in a spirit of sincere effort to be better equipped to bring the liberating and uplifting message of salvation to the men and women of our time. We know that your method has been persevering and that the meetings have not lost sight of the final goal of Christianity and of its supernatural and transcendent aims. At the same time your solicitude has been directed to apostolic effectiveness, in order “that the word of the Lord may speed on and triumph” (2 Thess. 3, 1).
It is our ardent prayer that these joint efforts may bear lasting fruit. We pray that the divisions of centuries will be overcome in the truth and charity of Christ, and that the Holy Spirit will bring to completion a work that has been begun under his inspiration - a work that is indeed manifested among the signs of the times.
It is the world that is awaiting with anxiety to enjoy in its fullness the liberating and salvific message of the Lord. We must go forward, dear friends and brothers, intent on rendering this service in the name of Jesus to those who await his Coming.
We thank you sincerely for this visit, and as we renew the expression of our own esteem in the Lord, we invoke abundant blessings upon you and all the beloved people of your venerable Church. And we ask you kindly to convey our best wishes to His Holiness the Patriarch.
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