Indeed it can be said that their memory is particularly vivid and relevant to our day. Considering the grateful veneration enjoyed for centuries by the holy Brothers from Salonika the ancient Thessalonica , especially among the Slav nations, and mindful of their incalculable contribution to the work of proclaiming the Gospel among those peoples; mindful too of the cause of reconciliation, friendly coexistence, human development and respect for the intrinsic dignity of every nation, by my Apostolic Letter Egregiae Virtutis 1 of 31 December I proclaimed Saints Cyril and Methodius Co-Patrons of Europe. The purpose of the document of five years ago was to remind people of these solemn acts of the Church and to call the attention of Christians and of all people of good will who have at heart the welfare, harmony and unity of Europe to the ever-living relevance of the eminent figures of Benedict, Cyril and Methodius, as concrete models and spiritual aids for the Christians of today, and especially for the nations of the continent of Europe, which, especially through the prayers and work of these saints, have long been consciously and originally rooted in the Church and in Christian tradition. The publication of my Apostolic Letter in , which was dictated by the firm hope of a gradual overcoming in Europe and the world of everything that divides the Churches, nations and peoples, was linked to three circumstances that were the subject of my prayer and reflection. The second circumstance was the first centenary of the above-mentioned Encyclical Epistle Grande Munus.
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Cyril and Methodius. In the Introduction, Pope John Paul recalls and expands on his apostolic letter Egregiae virtutis , in which he named the brother-saints as co-patrons of Europe along with St. Benedict, as well as letters of his predecessors. In a personal note, John Paul acknowledges that he felt "a particular obligation" to pay tribute to Cyril and Methodius, being "the first Pope called to the See of Peter from Poland, and thus from the midst of the Slav nations" 3.
The encyclical looks back at the apostolic lives and work of evangelization of Cyril and Methodius. Part 2 presents a biographical sketch of the two saints. Part 3 recalls their evangelizing activity. Part 4 emphasizes their vision of the Church as one, holy, and universal. Part 5 proposes that their catechetical and pastoral method remains "instructive for the Church today. Part 7 explains the significance of the Christian millennium to the common culture of the Slavic world.
Cyril and Methodius "made a decisive contribution to the building of Europe not only in Christian religious communion but also to its civil and cultural union" n. Woven throughout the encyclical are reflections on the method the brothers used in evangelizing Europe and the contributions they made to Slavic culture. The words of Christ, "Preach the Gospel to the whole creation" Mk inspired their missionary work, and they tried to adopt the customs and language of the people to whom they were preaching.
Among their principal contributions were the composition of a new alphabet and their translation of the sacred literature into the Old Slavonic language. Their profound work in orthodox doctrine and their zeal gained a great deal of admiration from Roman pontiffs, patriarchs of Constantinople, and Byzantine emperors.
Because of their ability to stay in touch with both the patriarch of Constantinople and the Roman See, Cyril and Methodius bridged the Eastern and Western traditions which come together in the one, universal Church.
Despite misunderstandings—the price they had to pay for their work—Cyril and Methodius served as instruments of unity in places where there was not unity between individual communities. In the conclusion of the encyclical Pope John Paul states that Cyril and Methodius by their words and life, sustained by the charism of the Holy Spirit , gave an example of a fruitful vocation not only for past time, but also for the centuries that are to come.
Co wi? Grande munus i przez Paw? Dokument sprzed pi? Pierwsza okoliczno?? W obecnym dokumencie pragn? Leon XIII przypomnia? Leon XIII ustanowi?
Slavorum Apostoli: On Saints Cyril and Methodius
However much it may humanly speaking seem filled with threats and uncertainties, we trustfully place it in your hands, Heavenly Father, invoking upon it the intercession of the Mother of your Son and Mother of the Church, the intercession of your Apostles Peter and Paul, and of Saints Benedict, Cyril and Methodius, of Augustine and Boniface and all the other evangelizers of Europe who, strong in faith, hope and charity, proclaimed to our fathers your salvation and your peace, and "The future! However much it may humanly speaking seem filled with threats and uncertainties, we trustfully place it in your hands, Heavenly Father, invoking upon it the intercession of the Mother of your Son and Mother of the Church, the intercession of your Apostles Peter and Paul, and of Saints Benedict, Cyril and Methodius, of Augustine and Boniface and all the other evangelizers of Europe who, strong in faith, hope and charity, proclaimed to our fathers your salvation and your peace, and amid the toils of the spiritual sowing began to build the civilization of love and the new order based on your holy law and the help of your grace, which at the end of the age will give life to all things and all people in the heavenly Jerusalem.