Invited by the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity and welcomed personally by Cardinal Kurt Koch, the Archbishop of Utrecht Dr. Joris Vercammen (President of the International Old Catholic Bishop’s Conference) and the Revd. Ioan Jebelean (Ecumenical Officer of the IBC), attended the inaauguration of Pope Franciscus in Rome on Tuesday, 19 March.
On Wednesday the ecumenical guests, including the Old Catholic delegation, were received by the Pope during a private audience. Archbishop Vercammen presented him with the new Swiss Old Catholic missal for Holy Week as a symbol of spiritual unity. He highlighted the importance of the work of the International Roman Catholic–Old Catholic Dialogue Commission and the common search for the catholicity that enables the church to be a guardian of humanity in culture and society. The archbishop expressed the hope that the new Pope will wholeheartedly support these efforts.
Office of Information of the International
Old Catholic Bishop’s Conference