Departing from protocol, the pope goes to Russian embassy over Ukraine
VATICAN CITY, Feb 25 (Reuters) – Pope Francis went to the Russian embassy to the Vatican on Friday to relay his concern over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine to Moscow’s ambassador, in an unprecedented departure from diplomatic protocol.
Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni said the pope spent more than half an hour at the embassy.
“He went to express his concern over the war,” Bruni said, declining to give details about the visit or the conversation.
Bruni would not comment on an Argentine media report that the pope, 85, had offered the Vatican’s mediation.
The ambassador, Aleksandr Avdeyev, denied this, according to the Rome correspondent of the Russian TASS news agency.
Avdeyev told the RIA Novosti news agency that the meeting lasted about 40 minutes and that the pope expressed “great concern” about the humanitarian situation in Ukraine.
The ambassador was quoted as saying that the Argentine pontiff “called for the protection of children, the protection of the sick and suffering, and the protection of people.”
When contacted for comment by Reuters, the Russian embassy said the ambassador was not available.
The visit by a pope to an embassy to talk to an ambassador in a time of conflict is unprecedented in living memory.
Foreign envoys are usually summoned by the Vatican’s Secretary of State or meet with the pope in the Apostolic Palace.
In an interview with Reuters on Feb. 14, before the invasion, Ukraine’s ambassador to the Vatican, Andriy Yurash, said Kyiv would be open to a Vatican mediation of the conflict.
Several hours after meeting the ambassador, the pope telephoned Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuk, leader of Ukraine’s Eastern-rite Catholics who has vowed not to leave Kyiv and who has opened up his cathedral’s basement as a bomb shelter.
Shevchuk’s Rome office said in a statement that the pope told the archbishop “I will do everything I can” to help.
In a statement on Thursday, Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin said the Holy See hoped that those who hold the destiny of the world in their hands would have a “glimmer of conscience”.
Francis made many appeals for peace in Ukraine before the invasion on Thursday.
He has not spoken publicly since.
He has proclaimed next Wednesday, Ash Wednesday, as a day of prayer and fasting for peace in Ukraine.
- Matthew 12:36 ( Link )
- 36 But I tell you that men will give an account on the day of judgment for every careless word they have spoken.
- 1st Timothy 4:4 ( Link )
- 4 God has created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth.
- 5 For every creation of God is good, and nothing that is received with thanksgiving should be rejected because it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.…
- 1st Timothy 4:7 – A Good Minister of Jesus Christ ( Link )
- 7 But reject irreverent silly myths. Instead, train yourself for godliness.…
- 1st Timothy 4:8 – A Good Minister of Jesus Christ ( Link )
- 8 For physical exercise is of limited value, but godliness is valuable in every way, holding promise for the present life and for the one to come.…
Unfortunately, these days men draw attention to themselves and to their causes through words.
Thankfully, they do not turn your attention to God or Godliness.
From their lack of directing you to God, you will know to discharge of their preaching and their prophecy very quickly.
If you hear what they say about this man.
If you hear what they say about the people’s pope.
As an aside, If you want to know whether you have an anointing, a calling on your life, see how the enemy raises up men to talk on you. Talk against you.
Many men and women did not know they had a ministry other than through how the enemy rose against them.
Other than through how the enemy raised up men and women against them, many might not have been drawn to God and their knees.
The enemy drawing them to battle was the confirmation and impetus towards identifying the calling on their lives.