Benedict to Turkey

Benedict to Turkey - Final Paper: Apostolic Journey of His...

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Final Paper: Apostolic Journey of His Holiness Benedict XVI to Turkey RS241: World Religions Andrew Dickson December 6, 2006 SVC Box No. 1319
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Apostolic Journey of His Holiness Benedict XVI to Turkey Significance of the trip As the world knows, Pope Benedict XVI recently gave a speech at the University of Regensburg, where he quoted a Byzantine emperor who spoke negatively about the Islamic religion. This caused extreme outrage in the Muslim community and eventually caused Pope Benedict XVI to announce publicly, that he did not share the same views. Coincidently, an apostolic journey to Turkey, a predominantly Muslim nation, was planned before the time of the speech. This journey can be used as an effort by Pope Benedict XVI to quiet any negative connotations associated with him in the Muslim community. However, this was not the sole purpose of Pope Benedict XVI’s journey to Turkey as it was planned well before he even gave his speech at the University of Regensburg. Turkey has a long tradition and significance to both the Catholic Church as well as all Christian churches around the globe. “It was there that the Christian community, particularly in the great centres of Antioch and Ephesus, became conscious of her identity and consolidated her growth.” 1 This means that the Christian religion can trace its beginning to Turkey and that it is a very important place for all Christians. The journey to Turkey takes on three major forms for the Pope. “It is a pastoral journey, an ecumenical journey and a journey of dialogue with the Islamic world.” 2 Pope Benedict XVI will be attempting to accomplish three separate goals while he is visiting Turkey. He met with members of the Catholic faithful of Turkey, which would encompass the pastoral journey. “In our own times, which have seen the rise and spread of forms of religious intolerance, Pope Benedict XVI, through the preaching of the word and the celebration of the sacraments, comes to confirm the Catholic community of Turkey in hope and in fidelity to Christ.” 3 The Catholic 1 Apostolic Journey of His Holiness Benedict XVI to Turkey, “Presentation,” www.vatican.va , December 3, 2006, 1. 2 Ibid, 2 3 Apostolic Journey to Turkey, “Presentation,” 2.
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Church in Turkey is a severe minority in a predominantly Muslim state. Therefore, the Pope is trying to commend them for their faith and consistency to the Catholic Church. The second form of Pope Benedict XVI journey to Turkey takes on the form of an ecumenical journey. “In the footsteps of his predecessors, he is fully determined to encourage every initiative that seems appropriate for promoting contacts and understanding with the representatives of the different Churches and Ecclesial Communities.” 4
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Benedict to Turkey - Final Paper: Apostolic Journey of His...

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