Friday, February 21, 2014

Pope Francis speaks to Evangelicals, Pentecostals and Charismatics about Unity

I was alerted to the following video by Bishop Greg Venables (Anglican Bishop of Agentina) on his Facebook page a few days ago. It was made during a 14th January meeting with the Rt Rev’d Anthony Palmer, a bishop and international ecumenical officer with the Independent Communion of Evangelical Episcopal Churches, a Charismatic denomination in the Anglican tradition.

Pope Francis and Bishop Palmer knew each other well and worked together closely when the Pope was Archbishop of Buenos Aires. The video is unusual in part because it was made and released in such an informal manner. Pope Francis had invited Palmer to spend some time with him in the Vatican. When Palmer told him that he was about to go to the USA to speak at a Kenneth Copeland pentecostal and charismatic pastors and leaders conference it was Francis who suggested a video message be made and played at the conference. The Pope's message was recorded on Palmer's iPhone!

This is so moving in its spontaneity. It really does make you wonder how in all conscience other churches (especially member churches of the Anglican Communion) can persist in creating significant new obstacles to Christian unity. Really, how CAN that be of God?


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