|A statue of Luther, very similar to the one|
that presided over Francis’ audience.
“These pan-Christians who strive for the union of the Churches would appear to pursue the noblest of ideals in promoting charity among all Christians. But how should charity tend to the detriment of faith? Everyone, knows that John, himself, the Apostle of love, who seems in his Gospel to have revealed the secrets of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and who never ceased to impress upon the memory of his disciples the new commandment 'to love one another', nevertheless strictly forbade any intercourse with those who profess a mutilated and corrupt form of Christ's teaching: ‘If any man come to you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into the house, nor say to him, God speed you’ (2 John 10). Therefore, since the foundation of charity is faith pure and inviolate, it is chiefly by the bond of one faith that the disciples of Christ are to be united.”
“Thus, Venerable Brethren, it is clear why this Apostolic See has never allowed its subjects to take part in the assemblies of non-Catholics. There is, but one way in which the unity of Christians may be fostered, and that is by furthering the return to the one true Church of Christ of those who are separated from it; for from that one true Church they have in the past fallen away.”