2007-10-24 11:04:04

Dokument: Bartholomaios` Rede in Neapel.

Zum Abschluß des großen "Friedenstreffens der Kulturen und Religionen" in Neapel hat der Ökumenische Patriarch von Konstantinopel, Patriarch Bartholomaios I., gestern eine viel beachtete Rede gehalten. Wir veröffentlichen das Statement des Ehrenoberhauptes der orthodoxen Christen in aller Welt hier im englischen Original. Quelle sind die Veranstalter des Treffens von der römischen Gemeinschaft Sant`Egidio. Außerdem dokumentieren wir weiter unten die Schluß-Rede des Gründers der Gemeinschaft, Andrea Riccardi.

Ansrpache von Bartholomaios I. in Neapel

Your Excellency, the President of the Republic of Italy, honourable Giorgio Napolitano,
Your Eminence, brother Cardinal of Naples, Monsignor Sepe,
Dear brothers, members of the blessed Community of Sant’Egidio,
Most beloved Fathers, Brothers and Children of Our Humble Person,

Having clearly in Our mind the statements given by the illustrious guests gathered here together, and the constructive discussions we had; feeling the desire and the need of a peaceful and non-violent world, we wish to contribute to this final moment bearing witness of the Orthodox Church, which we represent. How can Orthodoxy contribute to this universal dream? What is its aim? Its aim is to fulfil divine within man. In other words, we can say that it is the incarnation of God in mankind and in the world.
Contemporary world, and, particularly, the European one, is suffering, for having cast out God from the life of man. Many European thinkers have spoken, and speak of, a post-Christian age.
In European civilization there is the desperate attempt to replace Christ-God and true Man, with man, characterised by his passions and limits. There has been talk about the death of God. But if God is dead, sin does not exist, because the assumption for sin is the existence of God. As Dostojevskij wrote: “Without God everything is allowed”. Everything is relativized, supreme values are ousted, and, unfortunately, relative values are dominating. Relativism eventually builds a modern aspect of European humanism. Everything becomes relative, and values concerning man are relativized, man becomes the only value.
Orthodoxy proclaims restoration of Christ-God and true Man, as the solution to all anxieties of humanity. Actually Orthodoxy is the expression of a human and divine civilization, deaconry towards man, image of Christ. Educated by the divine-human example, man - and through him all the creation - is being transfigured from within. This is achieved through evangelical virtues, faith and love, prayer and meekness, love and humility. Who practices these virtues participates to the making of the Orthodox civilization.
Orthodoxy does not foster violence, because the Kingdom of God is not the product of a superficial or violent mechanical imposition, but it derives from the intimate, voluntary and personal acceptance of Christ, and from the continuous practice of the evangelical virtues, as the Lord himself said “The coming of the kingdom of God cannot be observed, and no one will announce, 'Look, here it is,' or, 'There it is.' For behold, the kingdom of God is among you." (Luke 17,.20-21)
Can the Orthodox world, a small fraction of world population, influence human history? Yes indeed, it can! Yet, Orthodoxy is not subject to the anxiety of expanding, from a geographic and quantitative point of view, its scope of action. It is an internal strength, with external consequences. It relies on its spirituality, it is grounded on the Gospel and on the spiritual tradition of the Great Fathers of the undivided universal Church. “Obtain the internal peace and you will save thousands of people around you” – a Holy man from the Orthodox Church used to say. This spiritual renewal - the transfiguration and change of mankind - is Orthodoxy’s offer to the contemporary world.
We believe that this kind of meetings and discussions will contribute to enhance co-operation among peoples, and to bolster the growth of relationships of mutual understanding and friendship, which the world badly needs.
Coming to a close, we want to rejoice with the Community of Sant’Egidio, for this wonderful occasion it offered us through this constructive and fruitful meeting. We acknowledge the special fondness and high respect that Sant’Egidio feels towards the Ecumenical Patriarchate, that forged links of mutual collaboration, and inspired a common effort for the future of our planet.
Finally, we can never forget the great and wonderful city of Naples, that so warmly welcomed us. May God bless Naples for this effort, so that it may continue to yield beneficial consequences to its people.
Ansprache von Andrea Riccardi, Gründer der Gemeinschaft Sant’Egidio

We have come to the end of these three days of dialogue on this crucial issue: “A world without violence”. Is it a dream? Or a rhetoric exercise of fine sentiments?
It is indeed a dream. I perceived it on the lips of the people from Darfur, North Uganda and Burma. I felt it during the Liberian war. We sense it every day among the people of the Middle East. A world without violence is the dream of those who are held hostage by crime. It is the dream of people who experience insecurity under the threat of terrorism. It is the dream of those who see young people trained at the school of violence, while they prepare a grim future for themselves tomorrow.
It is indeed a dream, the most beautiful of all dreams: a dream of peace. It is the most human dream of all.
It is a dream that Christians, Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, Shinto, believers of all faiths, have welcomed into their respective prayers this evening. We believe in the power of prayer. It can move mountains. The spirit is active in history; and banishing the spirit from history, as occurred in the 20th century, often entails depriving men and women of their heart, and stripping life of its soul. Peace needs the realism and hope of the spirit.
To believers, the dream of a world in peace is not an illusion, it is an ideal to live for, to fight for, to pray for, and to work for. It is an ideal that is indefeasible! A world without ideals to live for, either dies or cheapens itself. Peace is established with patience, with the immense patience that heals fractures.
Peace is a dream that is achieved with patience, a dream to pray for restlessly. This dream should guide the good feelings of entire peoples: love, mutual respect, pursuit of justice and patience. The feelings of people and nations are actually important. And religions guide them in their depths. Good feelings are important; let us not look down on them, like the advocates of pessimism and the prophets of doom do, by supporting a faulty realism that banishes the spirit from life and history.
Religions are not a flag under which people fight. It is shameful when religions are manipulated by terrorism. As Benedict XVI recalled the other day to the religious leaders: “Facing a world lacerated by conflicts, where violence is sometimes justified in the name of God, it is important to reaffirm that never religions can be a vehicle of hatred”. Indeed, the spirit dies out when religions become violent.
We are grateful for the firm, vivid, and serene presence of the Holy Father among us. A great witness of hope, he comforted us by saying that “the Catholic Church means to continue and walk the path of dialogue, in order to further mutual understanding among different cultures, traditions and religious wisdoms”.
We believe that this brilliant commitment will be followed by all the religious communities in the world, in order to reach, with greater audacity, a new era of peacemaking through dialogue, friendship and sincere conversation. Tonight in Naples, religions shine as luminous lights of peace.
Benedict XVI gave us the example, by sitting at the table with representatives of different Churches, Congregations and Religions. To sit at the same table is in itself a wonderful sign of peace, for we must all sit at the table together, in order to talk to each other, to look at each other’s face, to overcome distances. Peace is built in the heart by means of a humble and tenacious service.
There is so much that conspires to make us pessimists, people who will give up this vision. Pessimism seems to be stronger than everything, like the evil truth of history. Every day is distorted by gossiping media reports, that spoil and cheapen everything. It is the manifestation of a world that has relinquished the clear-headedness of a great vision, while it hides its weakness behind emphatic talk. Thus, weakness becomes strength, decadent prejudice becomes intelligence.
However, these days taught us to look beyond and hope. Not only beyond the fog of pessimism and the prophets of doom, but also beyond terrible crises. Many were the achievements of these days: among them, let me mention the true realism that ran through the dialogue between Israelis and Palestinians yesterday afternoon, an expression of the willingness to reach a rapid agreement for that tormented land.
Today, in Naples, we feel we need a more audacious era of commitment of all religions, to reconcile men, women and peoples, and to recall the responsibilities of peace. For peace is threatened and it needs patient and steadfast weavers, who can live the “realism of the spirit”. Without spirit there is no peace.
The atmosphere of Naples, the embrace of the people, the generous and committed collaboration of the Institutions has confirmed everyone, for this was not only a meeting, but a popular event of peace. Naples knows what peace is, because it knows the sorrow caused by violence. With its tremendous participation, Naples has become the capital of dialogue in the Mediterranean Sea, a city of peace. Therefore I say: thank you Napoli!
I thank the Church of Naples, its Archbishop, Cardinal Crescenzio Sepe, who showed us to what extent spirituality can be an unlimited source of courage for the achievement of peace. Without his tenacity, this event of peace would never have blossomed!
I thank you, religious leaders coming from all parts of the world: you show how peace is rooted in faith, and it has the colours of the rainbow!
Finally, I thank you all, friends and people of Naples, who volunteered generously to work for the success of this event! And thank you, if I may say so, to my friends of Sant’Egidio, who in great numbers have worked humbly and generously to serve and give life to this event!
Thank You Mr. President of the Republic, for with your presence and your words, which stem from a wide experience of the world and of humankind, you encourage us in our belief that dialogue is the way to build a better world.

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