Pope Francis delivered a video message to a Christian unity celebration in Phoenix.
While Christians may think of themselves as divided into different churches and denominations, the devil actually sees that they are one in their faith in Jesus, Pope Francis said in a video message to a Christian unity celebration in Phoenix.
“Division is the work of the ‘Father of Lies,’ ‘the Father of Discord,’ who does everything possible to keep us divided,” the Pope said on Saturday in the message to the gathering sponsored by the John 17 Movement.
“I feel like saying something that may sound controversial, or even heretical, perhaps,” he said in the video. “But there is someone who ‘knows’ that, despite our differences, we are one. It is he who is persecuting us. It is he who is persecuting Christians today, he who is anointing us with (the blood of) martyrdom.”
The devil, he said, “knows that Christians are disciples of Christ, that they are one, that they are brothers! He doesn’t care if they are Evangelicals or Orthodox, Lutherans, Catholics or Apostolic … he doesn’t care! They are Christians.”
The John 17 Movement — named after the Bible passage in which Jesus prays for the unity of his disciples — includes evangelicals and Catholics. One of the participants at the Phoenix meeting was Giovanni Traettino, a Pentecostal pastor from southern Italy whom the pope has known since his days in Buenos Aires. The Pope visited Traettino’s church last summer.
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SOURCE: Catholic Herald