Tag Archives: vatican

Priest: We need to praise what is good, true in the Muslim faith

VATICAN CITY — Not only is there a good deal in common between Muslims and Christians, but Catholics are called to respect and work together with those who practise the Muslim faith in recognition of truth and goodness they do possess, said Islam scholar Fr Thomas Michel.

Fr Michel, who holds a PhD in Islamic Theology and worked under Pope John Paul II as head of the Vatican Office for Relations with Muslims, told CNA that Benedict XVI, like both St John Paul II and Pope Francis, have all repeated the same message regarding Muslims – that of the Second Vatican Council.

“The document Nostrae aetate says that the Church has ‘esteem’ for Muslims,” he said. “It doesn’t mean that we should just tolerate Muslims or put up with Muslims. ‘Esteem’ means to try to see what people have that’s good and appreciate them for that.”  Continue reading Priest: We need to praise what is good, true in the Muslim faith

Message for the End of Ramadan

VATICAN CITY – The Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue has released its annual message to Muslims for the end of Ramadan, which will take place on 28 July.

The statement, dated 24 June, was released on 18 July. (see below)


Towards a Genuine Fraternity between Christians and Muslims

Dear Muslim Brothers and Sisters,

It gives us great joy to offer you our heartfelt congratulations and good wishes on the occasion of ‘Id al-Fitr at the conclusion of Ramadan, a month dedicated to fasting, prayer and helping the poor.

Last year, the first year of his ministry, Pope Francis personally signed the Message addressed to you on the occasion of ‘Id al-Fitr. On another occasion, he also called you “our brothers and sisters” (Angelus, 11 August 2013). We all can recognize the full significance of these words. In fact, Christians and Muslims are brothers and sisters in the one human family, created by the One God.

Let us recall what Pope John Paul II said to Muslim religious leaders in 1982: “All of us, Christians and Muslims, live under the sun of the one merciful God. We both believe in one God who is the creator of man. We acclaim God’s sovereignty and we defend man’s dignity as God’s servant. We adore God and profess total submission to him. Thus, in a true sense, we can call one another brothers and sisters in faith in the one God.” (Kaduna, Nigeria, 14 February 1982).

We thank the Almighty for what we have in common, while remaining aware of our differences. We perceive the importance of promoting a fruitful dialogue built upon mutual respect and friendship. Inspired by our shared values and strengthened by our sentiments of genuine fraternity, we are called to work together for justice, peace and respect for the rights and dignity of every person. We feel responsible in a particular way for those most in need: the poor, the sick, orphans, immigrants, victims of human trafficking, and those suffering from any kind of addiction. Continue reading Message for the End of Ramadan

Benedict XVI makes a short trip to have lunch with Pope Francis


When the Pope visited Benedict XVI at his Vatican residence, they got to catch up just like old friends. They met for about 30 minutes, but there was still lots more to talk about. That’s why during that brief get-together, Pope Francis invited Benedict XVI to lunch.

Continue reading Benedict XVI makes a short trip to have lunch with Pope Francis

Spread ‘joy’ of Jesus’ friendship, Pope tells teens

VATICAN CITY (20 Dec 2013) – Pope Francis encouraged teens to be living witnesses of their faith in his remarks during an audience with young members of the Italian Catholic Action movement.

“Dear young people, Jesus loves you, he wants to be your friend, he wants to be the friend of all young people,” the Pope said Dec. 20. “If you are convinced of this, surely you know to spread the joy of this friendship to all: at home, in the parish, at school, with your friends.”

The Pope said he had heard the Catholic Action movement’s theme for this year is “to discover (in) Jesus the presence of a friend in your life.”

“Christmas is really the celebration of the presence of God who comes into our midst to save us,” he explained, emphasizing the reality of Christmas.

“The birth of Jesus is not a fable! It is history that really happened, at Bethlehem, two thousand years ago. Faith makes us recognize in this baby, born of the Virgin Mary, the true son of God, who for love of us was made man.”

The pontiff further reflected on the importance of Christmas.

“In the face of the little (baby) Jesus, we contemplate the face of God, who does not reveal himself in strength, in power, but in the weakness and fragility of an infant. This baby shows us the faithfulness and the tenderness of the boundless love with which God envelops each one of us.”

“For this reason we celebrate Christmas, reliving the same experience of the shepherds of Bethlehem,” he noted.

“Together with many fathers and mothers who work hard every day, dealing with many sacrifices; together with children, the sick and the poor, we celebrate this holiday.”

The Pope then urged the youth to “witness” to the love of Christ, “carrying yourselves as true Christians: ready to lend a hand to those in need, without judging others, without speaking badly.”

“I encourage you to always be ‘living stones’ in the Church, united to Jesus,” he said.

Pope Francis closed by thanking the members of Catholic Action for their Christmas greeting. He offered his well-wishes and blessing to them in return.

(Source: CNA/EWTN News)