From Canterbury to Rome

I’m just back from an extraordinary visit to Rome.

My wife and I were in Italy to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Anglican Centre in Rome–an ecumenical outpost representing the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Anglican Communion in relations with the Roman Catholic Church. There was to be a grand dinner at the art gallery in a private Roman palazzo, with the Archbishop of Canterbury in attendance.

As it turned out, we were also witnesses to what may prove to be an historic encounter between the leaders of the Catholic Church and the Anglican Communion. At a stately private service of vespers, each gave a forward-looking, hopeful homily to inspire their respective churches to work together for evangelism and service to the poor. They exchanged personal gifts: the Archbishop received a replica of the staff or crozier given to the first Archbishop of Canterbury, while he he gave the pope his own, very simple pectoral cross.

The service concluded with the commissioning of 19 pairs of Anglican/Roman Catholic bishops or archbishops from all over the world. Their duty now is to carry out ecumenical work in their respective countries.

All in all, it was an impressive demonstration that the Holy Spirit is breathing new life into the ecumenical movement. —J. Douglas Ousley

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One Response to “From Canterbury to Rome”

  1. The Holy Spirit is indeed attempting to breathe new life into the ecumenical movement, and into our entire global community. I hope this commissioning of 19 pairs of ministers will quickly and effortlessly blossom into a fire-filled spiritual revival in which ministers from every religion and every denomination will become active participants. Our world is recoiling from the envoy of naysayers who refuse to see and acknowledge that change is mandatory. When our world begins to acknowledge the power inherent in biblical principles, nothing will ever be the same.

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