Vatican’s Cardinal Koch Meets Russian Orthodox’s Patriarch Kirill

Patriarch Kirill


As I have reported before, something is clearly going on with the Russian Orthodox Church and its position towards the Vatican.  This week another step was taken:

Vatican’s Ecumenism Leader Meets With Russian Patriarch

Note Points of Catholic-Orthodox Unity

MOSCOW, Russia, MARCH 17, 2011 ( On his first official trip to Russia, the president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity met Wednesday with Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia.

A note from the Moscow Patriarchate described Cardinal Kurt Koch’s meeting at the patriarch’s working residence as focused on “major areas of cooperation” between the two Churches.

The two noted the issues under discussion by the Joint International Commission for Theological Dialogue.

The statement added that despite theological difference, “both Churches can already now come into close cooperation in areas where their positions coincide, namely, defense of traditional Christian values in Europe, advocacy of the Christian position in the socio-economic sphere and in the ethics of scientific research and bioethics.”

On this basis, it is “possible to develop cooperation in international organizations, such as the U.N., OSCE, and the E.U. structures,” the note continued.

The Russian Patriarch also met with Bartholomew Patriarch of Constantinople in 2010 (announced in Orthodox Patriarchs of Constantinople and Russia to Meet). And while such a meeting is standard, the reality is that these two further nourished a relationship that they had when younger. Furthermore, Patriarch Bartholomew made it clear in his encyclical of February 2010 that he not only supports unity talks with Rome, he considers those opposed them as fanatics (see Bartholomew I Patriarch of Constantinople Opposes Those Who Warn Against Catholic Unity).

Thus, the idea of unity is becoming more and more public.

The reality is that while the Russian Orthodox want better relations with the Vatican, at this time they do not seem inclined to accept Papal authority. However, if they ever do, this will be dangerous for them AND the Church of Rome.

The other reality is that Pope Benedict absolutely does want to grow the Catholic Church in traditional Orthodox regions–but he has mainly taken the tactic of trying to foster better relations with the Russian Orthodox so that ultimately they will unify with Rome, and under Rome. Getting the Orthodox to accept Papal authority has long been a goal of the Roman Pontiff.

Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholics often seem to forget their own, as well as biblical, prophecies that show how this would be a disaster.

Cannot the Russian Patriarch see what is going on?

Whether he does or not, those who claim to be Russian Orthodox need to consider if compromise for the sake of unity is what his church needs. In my view, Patriarch Kirill and his supporters need to spend more time on trying to learn the original faith of the Bible and less on getting involved in the ecumenical movement that is already starting to impact most of the Eastern Orthodox.

Cardinal Kurt Koch himself is a German-speaker from Switzerland that I have suspected could have an important end time role.

Cardinal Kurt Koch has claimed that he has a lot of understanding of the Protestants, and even stated that this is one reason he was chosen to be the President of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity by Pope Benedict XVI. Yet, he has indicated that he is much more comfortable with the Orthodox than the Protestants. He basically seems to feel that there needs to be one church voice–a concept that most Protestants would bristle at, especially since Cardinal Koch wishes the Vatican to primarily be that voice. The Orthodox, while they also would have concerns, are less concerned about the Vatican having an often leading role (the Orthodox believe that Rome has a certain “primacy” amongst what they consider to be the 5 “apostolic sees”).

I have reported about Cardinal Koch several timesin the past nine months (e.g. Kurt Koch Made a Cardinal: Might He Become the Antichrist? and Kurt Koch Spoke on Vatican II: More Compromise Coming?). I believe that if he lives long enough, Cardinal Koch will either become the final Antichrist, support the final Antichrist, or be decide that he will have to oppose him. To take this a step further, yes, this means that I believe that someone who calls himself “Catholic” and somehow may become pope will be the final Antichrist (Some Doctrines of Antichrist). And I also will add that it is NOT “Catholic bashing” to consider that the final Antichrist will call himself “Catholic” as this is the position of certain Catholic mystics and currently living Catholic priests. This ecumenical movement is a concern to many who consider themselves to be either Orthodox or Roman Catholics, especially in the USA.

Now, as I do not personally know Kurt Koch, I am not saying that he is necessarily anything other than a loyal Catholic bishop and cardinal. But historically, those in ecumenical leaderships make statements that suggest compromise.

Yet, it is becoming increasingly obvious to Cardinal Koch and the Pope that the Eastern Orthodox are much closer to them doctrinally and ceremonially than the Protestants. Most dedicated Protestants would NOT be comfortable with Eastern Orthodox or Roman Catholic liturgy, nor would they be comfortable in the church buildings as they tend to contain many icons that most dedicated Protestants would consider to be idols (even the Roman and Orthodox positions on this changed over the centuries, as several of their “saints” opposed practices that they now seem to embrace, see What Did the Early Church Teach About Idols and Icons?). Despite the distance from Protestantism, based upon biblical prophecy, I strongly suspect that many continental European Protestants will ultimately support the coming ecumenical church that will call itself “Catholic”.

In an Asia News interview in December 2010, Cardinal Koch mentioned that Rome and the Eastern Orthodox share some type of “apostolic tradition” that the Protestants, in his view did not share. While the Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant faiths tend to all believe that they have some type of “apostolic traditions”, I would suggest that it can be better demonstrated from both sacred scripture (first century A.D. and prior) and early church literature (first through third centuries) that the Church of God, best currently represented in my view by the Living Church of God, has a much stronger claim to both consistency of teachings and other valid apostolic traditions of any of the world’s churches.

An ecumenical unity for the world is coming (cf. Revelation 13:3-4) and it will not be faithful to the early and true apostolic traditions or sacred scripture.   The Vatican and the Russian Orthodox should be concerned about where their ecumenical discussions are leading.

To learn more specifically why the Russians, the Orthodox, and Catholics should be concerned, please read the articles below:

Why Should American Catholics Should Fear Unity with the Orthodox? Are the current ecumenical meetings a good thing or will they result in disaster?
Orthodox Must Reject Unity with the Roman Catholics The talks for unification involve compromise and the apparent rising up of a changed religion that no one should accept.
Some Similarities and Differences Between the Eastern Orthodox Church and the Living Church of God Both groups claim to be the original church, but both groups have differing ways to claim it. Both groups have some amazing similarities and some major differences. Do you know what they are?
Russia: Its Origins and Prophesied Future Where do the Russians come from? What is prophesied for Russia? What will it do to the Europeans that supported the Beast in the end?
Catholic Prophecies: Do They Mirror, Highlight, or Contradict Biblical Prophecies? People of all faiths may be surprised to see what various Roman and Orthodox Catholic prophets have been predicting as many of their predictions will be looked to in the 21st century.

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