Vatican City, Mar 18, 2021 / 07:00 am (CNA).- Pope Francis has sent a letter to an ecumenical community experiencing “a severe trial,” encouraging the group to “persevere in its initial intuition” despite a dispute with its founder.

The Monastic Community of Bose, founded in northern Italy in 1965, is emerging from a years-long clash with its founder, the prominent Italian layman Enzo Bianchi, who was asked to separate from the community after an apostolic visitation and a resulting decree from the Vatican.

Br. Luciano Manicardi, Bianchi’s successor and current prior of the community, met with Pope Francis at the Vatican on the eve of the papal trip to Iraq.

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