Pope Benedict XVI waves as he concludes his general audience in Paul VI hall at the Vatican Jan. 18. CNS photo/Paul Haring

Pope urges agreement between Christians on ethical questions

By  Sarah Delaney, Catholic News Service
  • January 19, 2012

VATICAN CITY - Pope Benedict XVI said Christians of all denominations should come to agreement on ethical matters, especially regarding human life, family and sexuality.

The Pope, in a meeting Jan. 19 with an ecumenical group of Catholic and Lutheran leaders from Finland, said that differences among Christians regarding the "proper understanding of human nature and its dignity" had grown in recent years.

He urged coming together to reach "a profound agreement" on anthropological questions so that society and policy-makers could be guided in their decisions regarding the important areas of human behavior, the role of the family and sexuality.

The Pope told the group, an ecumenical delegation on their annual pilgrimage to Rome, that the common witness between Catholics and Lutherans should be reinforced to face the challenges posed by a world that "lacks true direction and longs to hear the message of salvation."

An ecumenical delegation sponsored by the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland comes to Rome each year on the Feast of St. Henrik, the patron saint of Finland.

The Pope said the annual visit was a testament to "the growth of communion among Christian traditions represented in your country" and that he hoped for deepening relations between Lutherans and Catholics in Finland.

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