The Pope Video – Inter-religious Dialogue

The Pope’s first-ever video message on his monthly prayer intentions was released Tuesday, highlighting the importance of interreligious dialogue and the beliefs different faith traditions hold in common, such as the figure of God and love.

“Many think differently, feel differently, seeking God or meeting God in different ways. In this crowd, in this range of religions, there is only one certainty that we have for all: we are all children of God,” Pope Francis said in his message, released Jan. 6, the feast of the Epiphany.

At the beginning of the video, a minute-and-a-half long, the Pope cites the fact that the majority of the earth’s inhabitants profess some sort of religious belief.

This, he said, “should lead to a dialogue among religions. We should not stop praying for it and collaborating with those who think differently.”

The video goes on to feature representatives of Buddhism, Christianity, Islam and Judaism, who proclaim their respective beliefs in God, Jesus Christ, Allah and Buddha.

Later on, after the Pope affirms that all, regardless of their religious profession, are children of God, the faith leaders state their common belief in love.

Pope Francis closes the video by expressing his hope that viewers “will spread my prayer request this month: that sincere dialogue among men and women of different faiths may produce fruits of peace and justice. I have confidence in your prayers.”

An initiative of the Jesuit-run global prayer network Apostleship of Prayer, the video was filmed in collaboration with the Vatican Television Center (CTV) and marks the first time the Pope’s monthly prayer intentions have been featured on video.

The Apostleship of Prayer was founded by Jesuit seminarians in France in 1884 to encourage Christians to serve God and others through prayer, particularly for the needs of the Church. Since the late 1800s the organization has also received a monthly intention from the Pope. In 1929 an additional, missionary intention was added by the Holy Father, aimed at the faithful in particular.

Referred to on the organizations’ website as the Pope’s “universal” and “evangelization” intentions, this month’s prayer requests focus on Francis’ desire for Interreligious Dialogue and Christian Unity.

Francis offers his universal petition so that “sincere dialogue among men and women of different faiths may produce the fruits of peace and justice,” and expresses his evangelistic prayer that “by means of dialogue and fraternal charity and with the grace of the Holy Spirit, Christians may overcome divisions.”

The Apostleship of Prayer has called the new videos on the intentions “The Pope Video.” While there are two intentions, the videos are centered on the first, universal intention.

This month’s video also features old friends of the pontiff from his time in Buenos Aires. Namely, Rabbi Daniel Goldman, Fr. Guillermo Marco, a Catholic priest, and Islamic leader Omar Abboud.

Released on various social media sites such as YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, the video shows Pope Francis speaking in his native Spanish, with subtitles available in a total of 10 different languages.

Papal prayer intentions for the rest of the year are listed on the organization’s website, displaying themes close to Francis’ heart, such as prayers for creation, families in difficulty, small farmers, indigenous peoples, countries receiving refugees, an end to child-soldiers, solidarity and respect for women.

Our readers would be advised to consider John Vennari’s comments on the Pope Video.


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27 Responses to The Pope Video – Inter-religious Dialogue

  1. So is God and his Holy Church just the same as buddha,allah,and every other pagan heretical belief systems?God Help us!

  2. SteveD says:

    Francis has never hidden his view that ‘there are many roads..’ which is (among other things) a ‘novelty’ in our faith. I am not surprised at this video but will certainly not be praying for his intention, I will be praying for many conversions to the one true faith by men of goodwill.

  3. Robert says:

    I am not averse to talking and communicating. What I am very conscious off is the difference between Christianity which is Revealed by God, and therefor not a matter of private conscience or opinion but Revealed Faith (CREDO)
    Masonry has this private belief and personal conscience placed above and before revelation. This is the road to Babel, the road of Self which is idolatry of self.
    So which road map are we looking at? Self or Revelation?

  4. toadspittle says:

    “So is God and his Holy Church just the same as buddha, allah,and every other pagan heretical belief systems?”
    No. Or else there’d be no point in killing one another, would there?

  5. toadspittle says:

    “So which road map are we looking at? Self or Revelation?”

    You assume it must be one or the other, Robert. I suppose you are right. If people “reveal” to me that the world is under 8,000 years old – I can’t believe them. I have to rely on what I can figure out to be true for myself.

  6. Gertrude says:

    As usual with the Holy Father his comments are ambiguous. To pray for our fellow-man is a noble intention – but – some of the faiths the HF refers to can hardly be described as Christian. So, we should be praying for their conversion to the One True Faith. There is precedence throughout the Church’s history for this.
    “Outside the Church there is no salvation” (extra ecclesiam nulla salus) is a doctrine of the Catholic Faith that was taught By Jesus Christ to His Apostles, preached by the Fathers, defined by popes and councils and piously believed by the faithful in every age of the Church. Here is how the Popes defined it:

    “There is but one universal Church of the faithful, outside which no one at all is saved.” (Pope Innocent III, Fourth Lateran Council, 1215.)
    “We declare, say, define, and pronounce that it is absolutely necessary for the salvation of every human creature to be subject to the Roman Pontiff.” (Pope Boniface VIII, the Bull Unam Sanctam, 1302.)
    “The most Holy Roman Church firmly believes, professes and preaches that none of those existing outside the Catholic Church, not only pagans, but also Jews and heretics and schismatics, can have a share in life eternal; but that they will go into the eternal fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels, unless before death they are joined with Her; and that so important is the unity of this ecclesiastical body that only those remaining within this unity can profit by the sacraments of the Church unto salvation, and they alone can receive an eternal recompense for their fasts, their almsgivings, their other works of Christian piety and the duties of a Christian soldier. No one, let his almsgiving be as great as it may, no one, even if he pour out his blood for the Name of Christ, can be saved, unless he remain within the bosom and the unity of the Catholic Church.” (Pope Eugene IV, the Bull Cantate Domino, 1441.)

    But man, following the example of his natural father, Adam, often disobeys the authority of God. The fact that the doctrine had to be thrice defined itself proves the Church’s paternal solicitude in correcting her erring children who fall into indifferentism.

    Here are some recommended starting points on this all-important subject:

    The Popes on Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus
    The Fathers of the Church on Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus
    Doctrinal Summary
    Sentimental Theology
    Pelagius Lives

    So, by all means pray for the conversion of those outside the Church, but there cannot be unity of the kind the Holy Father intimates.

  7. Robert says:

    Toad St Augustine wrote about predestination and free will. The point he made is that it is Our understand (human thinking and if you like naturalism) that judges and invariable with considerable less than the Truth. God however is above and beyond human thinking, In other words We (Man the Creature living within the visible Creation) attempt to pull God down to Our ways and thinking. St Augustine pointed out that it is Our perception of God that is the problem.
    Genesis is a Book outside of Time since it starts with God. Creation includes Eternity (things invisible) and what we Call Time (visible). This means even the yardsticks of measurement (sic days, hours, years) that we understand didn’t exist (they were created) at the moment(s) of Creation.
    Creation is ongoing didn’t just stop at one moment, proof of this is that every soul is created out of nothing by Our Father. The sum total of souls ever created is less than the number of stars in Our Galaxy.
    The Revelation of God is His Way of reaching down to Us so that we can see, hear, touch, taste Our God (are these not our senses?). I have absolutely No problem with the martyrology timescales and the Gospel (which is revealed Truth) genealogy of Christ back to Adam! The Faith requires Our understanding of Sin especialy Original (inherited condition) Sin and that this is essential to understand the Prophesy’s vis a vis the woman (Our Lady) and Our Lord. The Passion (fortold in explicit detail) is meaningless without Creation!

  8. toadspittle says:

    “There is but one universal Church of the faithful, outside which no one at all is saved.” (Pope Innocent III, Fourth Lateran Council, 1215.)”
    Well, he would say that, wouldn’t he? It was his job. Hardly an objective analysis, though.

    “The sum total of souls ever created is less than the number of stars in Our Galaxy.”
    You are probably right, Robert – but:
    1: How do you know that?
    2: How does it matter?

    “The Passion (foretold in explicit detail) is meaningless without Creation!”
    Well, we can agree on that, at least. Without “Creation,”* there wouldn’t be anything to mean anything, anyway.

    *What “Creation” is, is another thing.

  9. toadspittle says:

    “This means even the yardsticks of measurement (sic days, hours, years) that we understand didn’t exist (they were created) at the moment(s) of Creation.”
    No they weren’t.

  10. Michael says:

    Oh, and despite the video’s focusing on love as a common denominator (tacitly acknowledging perhaps, that there might just be a teeny-weeny difference in what the faiths represented there have to say about God), here is a good example of how this is not a straightforward issue either:

    Also, I’ve always struggled with how words like ‘love’ or ‘mercy’ or anything at all really can possibly be meaningful in a Buddhist context, given that one basic principle shared by the many traditions within Buddhism is that not only is the material world an illusion, but so is the self. Without a self, or other selves to interact with, or a material world to mediate those interactions, I don’t see how one can actually talk about acts or beliefs like love in any meaningful sense.

  11. Michael says:

    I’ve tried to post another couple of links earlier, but for some reason they’re not getting through. Could you delete one or more of the extraneous ones if they’ve made it to the queue? Thank you.

  12. kathleen says:

    Quite honestly, I have been so shocked and dismayed by this video – a cynical bow to religious indifferentism and syncretism condemned by the Church from ancient times – that I simply haven’t trusted myself to comment.

    We have been betrayed by the very person chosen to be Christ’s Vicar on Earth !!! That’s a hard truth to swallow… And I – cradle Catholic, who from my earliest infancy was taught to love and honour our ‘Holy’ Father – find it deeply depressing.

    Our Faith is based on the Cross of Christ, True God and True Man, on his Saving Sacrifice at Calvary…. and instead they dish us up an image of the Infant Jesus as the symbol of Christianity so as not to ‘offend’ (yuk) the other ‘believers’.
    They talk about Love! But where is the love for fellow men if you do not wish to save them from their errors and announce to them the Truth God came to reveal to Mankind? Without Baptism they will not be saved… and that has always been the Catholic Church’s teaching! (EENS)

    Pope Leo XIII wrote:

    “…they thereby teach the great error of this age-that a regard for religion should be held as an indifferent matter, and that all religions are alike. This manner of reasoning is calculated to bring about the ruin of all forms of religion, and especially of the Catholic religion, which, as it is the only one that is true, cannot, without great injustice, be regarded as merely equal to other religions”.

    From the Catechism:

    No 153. When St. Peter confessed that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God, Jesus declared to him that this revelation did not come “from flesh and blood”, but from “my Father who is in heaven”. 24 Faith is a gift of God, a supernatural virtue infused by him. “Before this faith can be exercised, man must have the grace of God to move and assist him; he must have the interior helps of the Holy Spirit, who moves the heart and converts it to God, who opens the eyes of the mind and ‘makes it easy for all to accept and believe the truth.'”

    No 161. Believing in Jesus Christ and in the One who sent him for our salvation is necessary for obtaining that salvation. Since “without faith it is impossible to please [God]” and to attain to the fellowship of his sons, therefore without faith no one has ever attained justification, nor will anyone obtain eternal life; But he who endures to the end.

  13. Michael says:

    I’m going to try one of the links I posted yesterday – it gives a good assessment of the issues underlying much of what we see in the Church today:

  14. Brother Burrito says:


    Please keep the Faith. If you were the leader of all God’s people on Earth, including all the people of Goodwill who live amongst us, then you too would talk like Francis does. His is the most difficult job imaginable. He, as Pontifex Maximus, has to build bridges between the unbridgeable which is an impossible task without Divine help. We must pray for him at all times. St Peter would approve of this.

    He is no heretic or schismatic. He is Christ’s ambassador on Earth. He has a difficult job, made more difficult by uber-Catholics trying to do it better than he himself can.

  15. johnhenrycn says:

    We who follow CP&S are grateful to all of the people behind it. Take me, for instance, who has never said a critical thing about our Holy Father, but who is upset about what is taking place on his watch. The owners of this blog should not be afraid to state their (our) concerns about the direction being taken by Pope Francis. They must decide where to draw the line when stating them, but they must be voiced. I don’t think anyone has crossed the line; but BB’s reminder is also a good one.

  16. The Raven says:

    I find this hard to write, but I am deeply discouraged by the present Holy Father. This is one of the reasons why I comment and write so little these days. I have attempted to read Laudato Si, but found that I was unable to muster any enthusiasm or energy to finish it (unlike, say, Deus Caritas Est, or any of BXVI’s other writings).

    I fear that Papa Bergoglio represents the coronation of the reactionary “Spirit of Vatican 2” crowd and he is leading us to a de facto acceptance of divorce and to married priests and all points beyond that. And it seems to me that his conception of “mercy” is no more than universalism and relativism enthroned.

    His words on ecumenism seem to embody the very worst type of “let’s paper over the cracks and pretend that we’re all friends” approach that has crucified Anglicanism over the last century: if we are unable to admit that the Faith that we have received from our fathers is the true faith and that other faiths are deficient, then what is the point of Catholicism? I’d rather be a grubby stylite than submerge my head in the effluent that we call “the signs of the times” of the early 21st century.

    The slow movement of the curia under BXVI meant that many of the sees of the world had been left vacant or with bishops past retirement age: we are reaping the whirlwind with appointments like Cupich or De Kesel.

    My pessimism may be misplaced: Francis may, this year, decide that he’s had enough and go to occupy the next deckchair on the lawn to Benedict, but I’m not holding out much hope that his successor will not be another St Gallen clubman.

  17. toadspittle says:

    Let’s put it another way: Is there any difference, relatively – between, say Anglicanism and Islamic fanaticism – or are they both equally heretical and erroneous? Who would we prefer living next door?
    Burro’s right. The Pope is also a diplomat, and can’t go around decrying other beliefs in public.

  18. The Raven says:

    Well, Toad, it depends which Anglicanism you’re talking about: if you have in mind the Anglicanism of, say, Herrick or Mascall then the question is one of schism, rather than outright heresy; if you are talking about the Anglicanism of Giles Fraser, which doubts the divinity of Our Lord, then I find very little (aside from the violence of its expression and comparative kindness) to distinguish it from heresies like Mahometanism.

    And the Pope is there to teach us the truth, like BXVI did at Regensburg, not cosy up with error: the long term effects of Regensburg were far more positive than any of the soft-shoe-shuffling “inter-religious dialogue” (which is code for woolly minded people getting together over tea and hobnobs to hold interminable meetings to produce long and meaningless documents that neither side really adheres to – ARCIC being a case in point).

  19. Michael says:

    If you were the leader of all God’s people on Earth, including all the people of Goodwill who live amongst us, then you too would talk like Francis does. His is the most difficult job imaginable.

    Hmm. Being pope is an extremely difficult task yes, but I think that to suggest its difficulty would lead to anyone in the same position speaking as Francis does is a bit far-fetched. Apart from the fact that he didn’t have to make this video at all, in doing so there are an enormous amount of resources within Church teaching that he could have drawn on to make the point that whilst recognising elements of truth in other religions, and emphasising the need for peaceful coexistence between them all, the Church has the fullness of Truth and is the ordinary means of salvation.

    His predecessor managed to make clear, nuanced comments on all sorts of difficult topics, including this one of interfaith relations, without giving the impression that Catholicism is somehow equivalent to Buddhism or Islam, just because they profess to believe in ‘love’ (and despite the markedly different understandings of that word held therein). Bl. Teresa of Calcutta (who did not have the responsibilities of the papacy on her shoulders, but was by all accounts a very busy woman, and attracted a lot of public attention) also managed to consistently preach mercy and attendance to wounded souls ‘on the peripheries’ without ever giving ambiguous messages regarding Catholic teaching.

    The pope may have diplomatic responsibilities, and therefore has to speak to all kinds of peoples, fostering good relations between them where he can. But he is first and foremost the Vicar of Christ, the sign and guarantor of unity for the universal Church, and so has a preeminent responsibility to guide the faithful in matters of faith and morals – a responsibility even more pressing in a time when so many are being misled. Balancing the two is really not that difficult – plenty of other popes have managed it.

  20. Gertrude says:

    ” he is first and foremost the Vicar of Christ, the sign and guarantor of unity for the universal Church, and so has a preeminent responsibility to guide the faithful in matters of faith and morals – a responsibility even more pressing in a time when so many are being misled. Balancing the two is really not that difficult – plenty of other popes have managed it.”

    I could not have put it clearer Michael. The sad thing is that we should be having this discussion about Peter’s successor at all.

  21. kathleen says:

    Brother Burrito @ 18:49 yesterday

    A cynical, below-the-belt ‘punch’ from my very own Team-mate! Wow!

    Would you perhaps be a closet Free Mason, BB, plugging for a One World Religion? Because that is exactly what this video is promoting – syncretism and indifferentism – two heresies that have been vehemently condemned by all former Popes and many Church Councils since earliest times.

    ” Please keep the Faith.”

    Oh, I shall indeed, BB. But not the faith like that exposed in this blasphemous video: a mish-mash of beliefs welcoming anything and everything that false religions preach… but only the One True Faith of the Church Our Lord Jesus Christ ‘built’ on Peter with the mission to “Teach all nations!” This is what Peter and the Apostles, and the Early Church Fathers taught. They were willing, happy even, to suffer vile tortures and martyrdom to ensure that the Good News – the VERY Good News of which they were first-hand witnesses – was passed down to future generations.

    A Pope who confuses and scatters the ‘sheep’ instead, is not fulfilling his role as Christ’s Vicar on Earth. Therefore we should most certainly “pray for him at all times”, as you say. (He probably is in more need of “prayers” than any Pope ever has been before!)

    It is neither kind nor merciful to insinuate that it matters not if men live and die without hearing the true message of Our Lord and Saviour. And to receive Holy Baptism to remove Original Sin and become members of His Body, the Church.


    I am no uber-Catholic, BB, sorry to disappoint you there. Just a miserable sinner trying to do her best… and often failing.

  22. Michael says:

    Gertrude @ 18:12, January 14th:

    Thank you! And yes, I concur, it is a great shame* that we should even have to be having these sorts of discussion at all.

    *And a great scandal actually. I know that the history books often draw attention to the Borgia popes and whatnot as examples of great scandals in the Church (which scandals are usually grossly exaggerated or applied inaccurately to Renaissance popes en masse), because of the contradiction between their lifestyle and the doctrine they were called to upheld, and that this no doubt put many people off. But I can’t help thinking that winning loads of people over with personality, whilst downplaying the importance of doctrine, actually has the worse effects in the long run, insofar as it leads large numbers of people into indifferentism and renders them less likely to change their lives.

  23. toadspittle says:

    B.B. has his faults, as do we all. I doubt if cynicism is one of them.
    There. Will that do?
    Don’t want to rock the barque with awkward questions, do we?

    What a shabby show CP&S is becoming.

  24. kathleen says:

    You are right, Toad. Bad use of word on my part – sorry. Our BB is no cynic. That whole thing was just a little misunderstanding… all cleared up now behind the scenes at CP&S. 😉

  25. toadspittle says:

    Be interesting to listen to what goes on behind the scenes at CP&S. Alas…

  26. Robert says:

    Double speak is a feature of Masonry of course with its sham symbols and shambolic signs a language below that of the common. Don’t believe what I say but believe what I intend.
    Lets see feed my lambs. Now are lambs full grown educated Rams and Ewes? Wordly wise? Lambs means feeding with unambiguious words.

  27. Arlene says:

    Freemasonry, as predicted.
    Looks like Francis Is ashamed of the Cross.

    P.S.: To Toadspittle: Imagine no religion…Stalin and Mao. No religion is a religion too.

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