Metropolitan explained why Orthodox and Catholics can unite

© RIA Novosti / Sergey Pathiterator in fotoreceptori Hilarion of Volokolamsk. Archival photoMetropolitan explained why Orthodox and Catholics can unite© RIA Novosti / Sergey Pathiterator the image Bank

The Orthodox and Catholic churches will not unite because of many accumulated over a thousand-year history of their separate existence the controversy, said the Chairman of the Department for external Church relations of the Moscow Patriarchate Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk.

Commenting on the program «Church and world» on TV channel «Russia 24» the recent statement by Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople about the inevitability of the unification of the two branches of Christianity, the Hierarch of the Russian Church expressed its disagreement with this point of view.

«I don’t share this position on the basis of a realistic analysis of the situation in the local Orthodox churches and the situation in the Orthodox-Catholic dialogue. Despite the fact that the foundations of our faith and the same creed we have almost the same, Catholics have a different view on the procession of the Holy spirit in the first place. And secondly, for almost a thousand years of history of separate existence we have accumulated a lot of contradictions and differences,» – said Metropolitan Hilarion.

For example, some persons in the Catholic Church recognized saints in the Russian Orthodox Church considered to be heretics, persecutors of Orthodoxy. «Catholics say about the possible canonization of cardinal Stepinac. This cardinal was a Croat, the Catholic Church he is venerated as a Saint. But according to the Serbian Orthodox Church, during the Second world war, the cardinal direct and immediate way participated in the genocide of the Serbs» — said the Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church.

Metropolitan Hilarion led a number of other arguments that show why unification of the churches in the foreseeable future is not expected. Including the repeated attempts to impose Orthodox Union, undertaken by Catholics during the Crusades, and modern active anti-Orthodox activity of the Uniates in Ukraine.