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Baptism In The Holy Spirit: Responding To The Pope’s Invitation

Author: Alastair Emblem

Picture: Pixabay

Baptism In The Holy Spirit: Responding To The Pope’s Invitation

Alastair Emblem explains how we can follow Pope Francis’ encouragement “to share baptism in the Holy Spirit with everyone in the Church” in 2021.

Pope Francis has asked Catholic Charismatic Renewal “to share baptism in the Holy Spirit with everyone in the Church.”  He also requested that, as part of the current of grace of Charismatic Renewal, Life in the Spirit seminars should be organised in parishes. You may be wondering how you can respond to this invitation, particularly in light of the current restrictions.

In 2021, Alton Day of Renewal (ADoRE) will be putting on a programme of online monthly spiritual mini-retreats following the stages of a classic “Life in the Spirit” seminar series, to teach people about the “current of grace”.

The programme will explore how the Holy Spirit empowers us to be missionary disciples, providing participants with an opportunity each month to pray for a greater activation of the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

We believe this will provide a good opportunity to invite others who are seeking a deeper personal faith experience; it will also encourage you to “fan into a flame the gift of God” which is already in you, but perhaps not fully used.

Developing A Deeper Understanding Of The Holy Spirit

We have been running online ADoRE mini-retreat sessions on Zoom since May 2020, and increasing numbers from all over the country have been enjoying the experience.

We squeeze quite a lot into the 3-hour format. Starting at 10am on a Saturday, Mass is followed by 15 minutes of Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. We then have a time of prophetic sharing of what we feel the Lord is saying to us. After a break, we have about 15 minutes of praise and worship followed by an inspiring 45-minute talk from a guest speaker, concluding with a time of prayer. In 2021, there will also be short testimonies and discussion in breakout rooms before finishing at 1pm.

We have planned an impressive line-up of guest speakers. We start on 23 January 2021 with Charles Whitehead, who will speak about God’s love. Other speakers include Jenny Baker, Maria Heath, Kristina Cooper, Fr Gareth Leyshon and Geoff and Gina Poulter.

Topics will cover a deeper understanding of the work of the Holy Spirit, as well as praying for others to receive the Baptism in the Spirit and how to exercise the gifts He gives us for spreading the Gospel and building up the Church.

"We're a Church that's on the move!"

ADoRE has been providing spiritual refreshment for over 45 years, but until 2020 its reach was limited.

The recent spread of our online ministry is the fulfilment of this prophecy by Charles Whitehead in 2015: "I pray that the Lord will continue to bless this Day of Renewal... He's probably got a big expansion coming... if people are listening to Pope Francis and people are going to be evangelising more, then days like this are going to be an absolute blessing…. we're a Church that's on the move, we're going to be a growing Church: this is what the Pope says and wants, this is what the Lord wants, this is what the Holy Spirit will inspire - but you've got to do the work! So God bless you!" 

Looking back, we can see how prophetic these words were. Within 18 months we were "on the move," to a larger venue for our meetings and we saw a "big expansion" in numbers.

Now, with our meetings online, we are reaching even bigger numbers over a much wider area. We pray that we will be an "absolute blessing" to all who are seeking the Lord’s will.

Here are a few testimonials we have received, showing the Lord's power at work in people's lives:

  • I am so glad I am now able to attend your monthly Adore meetings on Zoom, as it would be impossible to attend in person. I enjoyed every part of today’s meeting - it was amazing. I feel so blessed and filled with the Holy Spirit.
  • As always, the power of the Holy Spirit was not diminished by the fact that we could not be physically together. This is, to me, the most remarkable thing about Adore online. The event is well organised and presented.
  • I genuinely feel it is all helpful in connecting me with the Lord. I particularly like the praise and worship. 
  • I have really enjoyed the talks, the Mass and the sharings; it has all been very uplifting and faith affirming.
  • Very carefully thought out and planned. Format, length and timing were great.
  • Alastair Emblem is Core Group Leader of Alton Day of Renewal. Further details of ADoRE 2021, plus information about charismatic renewal and many recordings, visit www.altonrenewal.com    
  • To join the mailing list, email adore@altonrenewal.com

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