20 December 2011
The President of ICCRS, Michelle Moran, travels to many places in order to represent the worldwide CCR. This autumn has been a very busy and blessed time for her:
In September she was in Puebla, Mexico for their annual National Meeting of Servants. As this was Michelle’s first visit to Mexico it was a very special time. The overall topics for the conference flowed from the document Verbum Domini and as Michelle was an auditor at the synod on this theme she was particularly pleased to share on the subject of the Word of God in the life and mission of the Church.
In October at the request of the Pontifical Council for Christian Unity Michelle was asked to contribute to a very important ecumenical gathering, the second Global Christian Forum which was held in Manado in Indonesia. This forum brought together all the great streams of the Christian faith including: Orthodox, Pentecostals, Evangelicals, Anglicans, Protestants and Charismatics. Participants came from 65 countries and all the continents. The focus of the gathering was two- fold, firstly to reflect upon the enormous shifts in world Christianity. One of the presenters on this topic was Mr Peter Crossing who worked very closely with Dr David Barrett RIP on producing the statistics for ICCRS about Charismatic Renewal worldwide. At this forum he presented some very interesting data from his atlas of global Christianity. The second focus for the gathering was to recognise the upsurge of Churches celebrating the person and work of the Holy Spirit. Alongside Dr Opoku Onyinah, a Pentecostal bishop from Nigeria who spoke about the history of Pentecostalism and its contribution to world Christianity, Michelle Moran delivered a paper on the development of the Charismatic movement within the Roman Catholic Church. As well as being present at this ecumenical forum, our president was also able to meet the diocesan CCR leaders and enjoy an evening of sharing and fellowship together. She was also greatly helped in her travel arrangements by the CCR in Jakarta. It is wonderful to belong to such a caring charismatic family and to know we have friends all over the world.
Michelle and Darek Jeziorny the chair of ESCI, were pleased to represent ICCRS at an event hosted by the new Pontifical Council for New Evangelisation. The theme of the weekend was: “New Evangelisers for the New Evangelisation”. One aim of the meeting was to present to the Pope the representatives of various Church realities who have been carrying out the new evangelisation. It was a joy to be there with leaders from many of the streams of the Charismatic Renewal including those who work in Schools of Evangelisation, Covenant Communities, Youth outreach etc. The leaders’ meeting was followed by a larger general gathering in the afternoon at which the Holy Father greeted all the evangelisers. In the evening there were various evangelistic outreaches at different venues in Rome. Then after the special celebration of Holy Mass on Sunday the Holy Father announced at the Angelus time, the ‘Year of Faith’ which will begin in Oct 2012.
It was a great joy to be with the CCR in Malta for their annual conference. The overall theme focused on the Gospel text of the calming of the storm. Michelle spoke about the difficulties and strong challenges that we face as Christians in the midst of secularism. She was however also able to encourage people to see Jesus in our midst and to know that the Holy Spirit wants to put fresh wind in our sails. It was especially encouraging to see one of the evenings being led by young people and there was a very moving moment where recognising that we need each other, the young people prayed for their elders and vice versa.
At the request of the Catholic Fraternity, Michelle spoke at the conference for Communities of the Fraternity in Brazil. She spoke on the important theme of building communion between CCR and the Communities. She emphasised that there is one current of grace which is the grace of the Charismatic Renewal. However there are many and varied expressions, so we need to treasure and respect our unity in diversity.
Another important ecumenical initiative in which ICCRS is involved together with some of the other ecclesial movements, associations and communities is “Together for Europe”. At this critical time for countries in Europe it is perhaps even more important that we show our solidarity and commitment to collaborating together as people who have a heart for the future of Europe. The movements are working together to overcome barriers and to unite people of different nationalities, cultures, languages, social backgrounds and generations. On 12th May 2012 there will be a special gathering with representatives from Together for Europe with Church leaders and Politicians in Brussels the home of the European Parliament. For further info see: www.together4europe.org.
As a member of the Pontifical Council for the Laity, Michelle participated in the XXV plenary assembly where the theme was: “The Question of God Today. Should we not start all over again from God?” The meeting consisted of reflecting on this important theme in the magisterium of Pope Benedict XVI. There were several thought provoking lectures, lively debates and mutual exchanges. Also, there was of course, an audience with Pope Benedict XVI.