New Irish cardinal promises to promote religious unity


 Cardinal Desmond Connell pledged to work towards healing rifts between Christian communities on Sunday. Speaking at his installation as Cardinal Protector of the San Silvestro church in Rome, he said that although there were a number of tragic divides between Catholic and other Christian churches, there were also many similarities. Cardinal Connell pointed out that San Silvestro, which dates back to the eight century, was instituted as a titular church in 1517 - the same year the Reformation began. "This cannot fail to be significant for a church that serves the English-speaking community, because the Reformation had its most influence in the English-speaking world," he said. He said that as a cardinal he was responsible for working to promote unity with other churches and ecclesiastical communities with which the church enjoyed "the fundamental communion which arises from baptism but with which our communion remains far from complete." Cardinal Hume was the previous Protector of San Silvestro - which is a popular church with the English-speaking communities in Rome. It has strong links with the Irish college nearby. A large gathering of Filipino parishioners sang during the Mass and performed music and dancing afterwards.

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