Since the Patriarch’s meeting with Pope Francis in Cuba there have been criticisms and talks against the meet, as the Orthodox and Catholic Churches have been in serious dispute since the eleventh century till date. The meeting came as a great surprise to almost everyone who heard it, as it surfaced in very sudden and quick manner.
Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia at the conclusion of his recent tour spoke to Russian journalists at the Brazilian city of San Paulo and revealed to them saying:
“No one was talking me out of it [from meeting with the Pope] because no one knew. Five people knew about this meeting – I am not going to tell their name them. Why was that? Because it is impossible to prepare such a meeting openly: too many opponents,”
The problem was not even the Orthodox people who think “there is some danger in the meeting per se,” he said.
“There are powerful forces that did not really want it, so we needed to prepare it calmly and quietly, which we did,” the primate explained.
When talks and questions arouse in the Press conference about the Declaration he sign with Pope Francis, the Patriarch said:
“We finished writing the declaration a few hours before the meeting, which is proved by the text being not very well printed. We kept editing the text until the very last moment, together. This is a product of creative work by the two Churches,”; “We have a high level of consensus in assessing what is happening today to the human family, in the world of politics. There is shared understanding of what a Christian’s position must be in the face of all these menacing challenges,”
In his further explanation of the Declaration he admitted to have a knowledge of the fears that have grown among the devouts as to “whether this is going to deform the doctrine somehow, whether there will be some changes in liturgical life, in pastoral approaches,” the patriarch said, adding that at the meeting they did not discuss a single theological issue, and so there is “nothing to be afraid of.”
The division between the Orthodox and Catholic Churches, which has existed since the eleventh century, cannot be overcome with agreements between their leaders and hierarchs, the Christians separated “in response to our sinfulness” and “it will be a God’s miracle if we ever live to see this happen [the reunification of the Churches],” Patriarch Kirill said.