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|Ioannes Paulus PP. II|
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4. The cry of men and women today seeking meaning for their lives reaches all the Churches of the East and of the West. In this cry, we perceive the invocation of those who seek the Father whom they have forgotten and lost (cf. Lk 15:18 - 20; Jn 14:8). The women and men of today are asking us to show them Christ, who knows the Father and who has revealed him (cf. Jn 8:55; 14:8 - 11). Letting the world ask us its questions, listening with humility and tenderness, in full solidarity with those who express them, we are called to show in word an deed today the immense riches that our Churches preserve in the coffers of their traditions. We learn from the Lord himself, who would stop along the way to be with the people, who listened to them and was moved to pity when he saw them "like sheep without a shepherd" (Mt 9:36; cf. Mk 6:34). From him we must learn the loving gaze with which he reconciled men with the Father and with themselves, communicating to them that power which alone is able to heal the whole person.
This appeal calls on the Churches of the East and the West to concentrate on the essential: "We cannot come before Christ, the Lord of history, as divided as we have unfortunately been in the course of the second millennium. These divisions must give way to rapprochement and harmony; the wounds on the path of Christian unity must be healed."(9)
Going beyond our own frailties, we must turn to him, the one Teacher, sharing in his death so as to purify ourselves from that jealous attachment to feelings and memories, not of the great things God has done for us, but of the human affairs of a past that still weighs heavily on our hearts. May the Spirit clarify our gaze so that together we may reach out to contemporary man who is waiting for the good news. If we make a harmonious, illuminating, life - giving response to the world's expectations and sufferings, we will truly contribute to a more effective proclamation of the Gospel among the people of our time.
9 Address to the Extraordinary Consistory (June 13, 1994): L'Osservatore Romano, June 13 - 14, 1994), p. 5
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