Skip to comments.Unity of Faith in a Diversity of Traditions [Middle East]
Posted on 09/21/2012 6:58:28 AM PDT by marshmallow
Pope Benedict XVIs plan for enriching cooperation among the Churches of the Middle East
It was impossible not to notice the colorful, varied display of liturgical vestments and clerical garb during the recent papal visit to Lebanon. The rich cultural diversity among Christians in the Middle East gives witness to the Apostolic traditions which began to develop almost immediately and independently from each other at the very beginning of Christianity. As the Apostles spread the gospel and worship of Jesus Christ to the far corners of the known world, distinct liturgical traditions naturally burgeoned as local churches took root.
The six liturgical traditions of the Catholic Church were conspicuously present by the end of the fourth century and are still celebrated in Lebanon and throughout the Middle East today: the Liturgy of St. Mark (Coptic and Ethiopian), the Liturgies of Sts. John Chrysostom and Basil (Greek Melkite), the Liturgy of St. James (Maronite, Syrian, and Syro-Malankara), the East Syrian Liturgy (Chaldean and Syro-Malabar), the Armenian Liturgy, and the Latin Mass.
Pope Benedict XVI strongly affirmed this diversity of traditions as a harmony within the unity of faith in his post-synodal apostolic exhortation The Church in the Middle East, which was signed and distributed to the major hierarchs during his recent visit to Lebanon:
Like my Predecessors in the See of Peter, I wish here to state once more my desire to ensure that the rites of the Eastern Churches, as the patrimony of the whole Church of Christ in which shines forth the tradition coming down from the Apostles through the Fathers, and which, in its variety, affirms the divine unity of the Catholic faith, are observed and promoted conscientiously.
Pope Benedict dedicated a large portion of this exhortation to urging the different Churches to pray, learn, and work together in order.........
(Excerpt) Read more at catholicworldreport.com ...