Pope Francis to Celebrate 2017 Protestant Reformation Anniversary?
Pope Francis meets with first Protestant leader
April 8, 2013. (Romereports.com) On Monday morning, Pope Francis welcomed the president of the Evangelical Church in Germany, Nikolaus Schneider, in his first papal audience with a Protestant leader and his wife.
In a 30 minute meeting, the two leaders spoke about ecumenism. Both spoke about the martyrs as a bond between Christians, as well as the upcoming anniversary of the Reformation in 2017, and the possibility that both Churches will celebrate it together. (note: Pope Benedict was planning something like this as well – jv)
At the end, the two exchanged greetings as well as gifts. Schneider gave Pope Francis a Bible in German, while the Pope gave him a papal medallion. After the exchange, the Pope enthusiastically thanked Schneider in German.
Other leaders present at the meeting were Swiss Cardinal Kurt Koch, the prefect for the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, as well as German Archbishop Gerhard Muller, prefect for the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
The Evangelical Church in Germany is a federation of 22 Protestant Churches representing a third of that country's population.
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