Pope John Paul II nodded several times in agreement as ELCA Presiding Bishop Mark S. Hanson greeted him during a March 24 audience at the Vatican.
The 18-member ecumenical delegation accompanying Hanson met the head of the Roman Catholic Church just after the Holy Father greeted a cheering throng of several thousand pilgrims at a public audience in a nearby auditorium.
John Paul individually greeted each member of the ELCA delegation as they filed to his chair. Then Hanson read a prepared statement greeting the pontiff in the name of Christ and on behalf of the ELCA and of the Lutheran World Federation's general secretary, Ishmael Noko, and president, Christian Krause.
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