Pope Francis Opens International Conference on Complementarity

Pope Benedict XVI gives his cardinal ring to Cardinal Medardo Joseph Mazombwe.jpg

The first day of The International Interreligious Colloquium on The Complementarity of Man and Woman in Vatican City Synod Hall was attended by about 350 academic, religious, and civil society leaders from over 14 religions and 23 countries.  Participants listened to an unprecedented array of prominent speakers, beginning with Pope Francis, speaking about the reality of the complementary relationship between men and women as it is lived in the world, and the role of this union in God’s divine plan.

Pope Francis

The Holy Father, Pope Francis, said that the family is encountering “an ecological crisis” deeply affecting the poor and young people, calling for a renewed appreciation of the complementary gifts between man and woman discovered and cultivated within family and marriages, and encouraged the young to be “revolutionaries with the courage to seek true and lasting love.” Pope Francis sees Humanum in continuity with his Apostolic Exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium, in which he says the Church is “called to be at the service of a difficult dialogue” and ecumenism contributes to the “unity of the human family.”

With Archbishop Chaput in attendance, Pope Francis announced that he will attend the World Meeting of Families next year in Philadelphia, marking the Holy Father’s first visit to United States.

Watch video of Pope Francis’ talk here.