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Free Presbyterian minister ought to realise the majority of Christians from all traditions have long ago moved on

letter of the day: caTHOLIC CANON AT ST ANNE'S

Published 09/08/2016

It was a beautiful gesture on behalf of St Anne's Cathedral Chapter to appoint Fr Eddie O'Donnell a canon.

The majority of Christians of all traditions have long since moved beyond the raging disputes of past centuries and the language of anathema and mutual insult.

In reply to the Free Presbyterian Church and those who think as they do, those like Rev John Gray (Write Back, August 3), with his profoundly offensive denunciations of our most holy Catholic faith, I simply say: you are welcome to protest for another 500 years, if you so wish.

It does not - and cannot - change the simple reality that we, Catholics, are your fellow Christians and that you are also our brothers and sisters in Jesus Christ.

To paraphrase the great St Augustine: whether you like it or not, you are our brothers and sisters; and you will only cease to be so when you no longer say "Our Father".

What St Augustine said of those who had broken Christian unity in the fifth century applies to those who seek to perpetuate disunity in the 21st century: "If they say: 'Why do you seek us? What do you want of us?', we should reply: 'You are our brothers'. They may say, 'Leave us alone. We have nothing to do with you'.

"But we have everything to do with you, for we are one in our belief in Christ; and so we should be in one body, under one head."

FR PATRICK MCCAFFERTY

Crossgar, Co Down

Belfast Telegraph

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