General Audience, November 15, 2000

Unity in faith is seen as the condition for full communion in the Eucharistic Assembly Pope John Paul II General Audience November 15, 2000 Dear Brothers and Sisters, In our Jubilee Year catechesis, we reflect today on the link between the Eucharist and the task of restoring unity among all Christ’s followers. The New Testament emphasizes the close connection between fidelity to the word of God and participation in the Eucharist. Unity in faith is seen as the condition for full communion in the Eucharistic Assembly. For this reason, although the Sacrament of Baptism establishes a basic union of all Christians, doctrinal divisions among Christ’s followers are an obstacle to full sacramental sharing. The limits to intercommunion point to the weight of suffering caused by divisions among Christians. They oblige everyone to be deeply committed to the ecumenical task, in fidelity to Christ’s will that all should be one (cf. Jn 17:21). I warmly welcome the group from the NATO Defense College: I encourage you always to see your professional duties as a service to the cause of peace. I extend a special greeting to the members of the Irish Defence Forces, the Gardae­ and the Prison Service, led by the Head Chaplain. Upon all the English-speaking pilgrims and visitors, especially those from Ireland, Japan and the United States of America, I invoke the joy and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ.

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