Implication of Pope Francis’ visit to Sweden

(VOVworld)-Visiting the southern city of Lund, Pope Francis joined leaders of the Lutheran World Federation for the commemoration of 500 years of the Reformation.

The Lutheran World Federation, a global communion of national and regional Lutheran churches, now has 144 member church bodies in 98 countries representing over 74 million followers. The Pope also had separate  meetings with King Carl XVI Gustaf, Queen Silvia and Prime Minister Stefan Lofven.

Implication of Pope Francis’ visit to Sweden - ảnh 1
Pope Francis (center), Bishop Munib Yunan (left) and senior Lutheran Martin Junge (right)
(Photo: BBC)

During a joint ecumenical prayer service in Lund, Pope Francis and Bishop Munib Yunan, President of the Lutheran World Federation signed a joint declaration on expanded cooperation on refugees, peace and climate change. The document stated “Fifty years of sustained and fruitful ecumenical dialogue between Catholics and Lutherans have helped us to overcome many differences, and have deepened our mutual understanding  and trust...we have learned that what unites us is greater than what divides us.”

The Swedish visit is another milestone in a decade long Catholic-Lutheran dialogue process, which includes the 2013 joint document “From conflict to communion”. The important document expresses deep regrets over the pains Lutherans and Catholics have caused to each other.

The Pope’s historic visit to Sweden, which is predominantly Lutheran, marks the beginning of fruitful cooperation between Lutherans and Catholics all over the world. It conveys the message that reconciliation and cooperation can help to ease the suffering of humankind.