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From May 22-24 in the Cultural center of the Diocese of Boston of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, the 25th meeting of the North American Orthodox-Catholic Commission was held. The commission was formed at the initiative of the Standing Conference of the Canonical Orthodox Bishops in the Americas (SCOBA, currently the Assembly of Bishops) and the Conference of Catholic Bishops in the USA. Over time, the commission has discussed numerous questions regarding Ordination (1988), Marriage between Orthodox and Catholic Persons (1990), and numerous others.
The current commission draws member-bishops from many dioceses of the Catholic Church in the United States and representatives of numerous Orthodox jurisdictions in the USA. This year, for the first time, the Russian Orthodox Church was represented by a hierarch – the Administrator of the Patriarchal Parishes in the USA, His Grace Bishop John of Naro-Fominsk. The commission heard reports on numerous issues that have arisen from the last meeting, as well the meeting of His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and all Russia with the Pope of Rome, Francis in Cuba, the Roman Pontiff and the Patriarch of Constantinople Bartholomew, in Greece.
The members also discussed topics regarding pastoral care of families. One of the members of the organizational committee for the Great Pan-Orthodox Council in Crete delivered a lecture on its importance in the life of the Orthodox Church.
A joint communique was also drawn focusing on the push for peace in the Middle East and the persecution of Christians around the world.