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NCC - Church leaders celebrate historic meeting of Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew and Pope Francis

Washington, May 28, 2014 – Officers and staff of the National Council of Churches USA expressed "joy and celebration" at the historic meeting of Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew and Pope Francis in Jerusalem this week.

While media coverage has focused on Pope Francis' meetings with Israeli and Palestinian leaders, the NCC noted the original purpose of the visit was "ecumenical in nature."

"The real significance is the fact that both Pope Francis and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew traveled to Jerusalem to embrace the unity that has been growing for fifty years," said Jim Winkler, president and general secretary of the NCC

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