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Myles Dempsey: Words of Wisdom

Author: Myles Dempsey

Picture: Michael J.Davis

Myles Dempsey: Words of Wisdom

As we continue to remember Myles Dempsey, be inspired by a selection of his Spirit-filled and inspired reflections on some key themes.

On Trusting Jesus

In these days of uncertainty, we need to keep our eyes fixed firmly on Jesus, the light of the world, who guides us unwaveringly through the gathering darkness when we put our trust in Him. Before the fire of His love, the cold, wet fog evaporates like “mist before the noonday sun”.

Our responsibility as Christians is to be transformed in holiness and let the light of Christ shine through us, so we can be true guides for others who are in danger of being swallowed up in the maelstrom of sin at present enveloping the world.

On CCR

I say without hesitation that the greatest hope for the Church and the world is the Catholic Charismatic Renewal. We need to take this seriously ourselves. The most important thing we can do is to invite the Holy Spirit into our lives. We cannot be Pelagian and think we can fix the world by ourselves.

In 1975, Pope Paul VI said in Rome at the first international conference that CCR was “a chance for the Church and for the world.”  It is a chance that hasn’t been lived up to. We must come to our senses. We must realise what it is and take it more seriously. CCR was God’s gift to make us implement Vatican II. It started just after Vatican II ended. From small beginnings, it has exploded round the world.

On Mary

Mary is the model of perfection in the Christian life with her openness to the Holy Spirit, and her “yes” to God. When we are in relationship with her, we get caught up in that. We share in her obedience and the trust she showed in God when she said "yes" to the Incarnation without understanding what it would mean.

Just doing God’s will. That’s how it should be in the Catholic Charismatic Renewal. We should learn from her. When we do, we will experience the presence of the Holy Spirit much more perfectly and she will help us to make a much more complete “yes” in our lives. We will be able to say “let it be”, as Mary did.

On The Power Of Prayer

Prayer can certainly make a difference on the outcome of world events. In 1986, I got a word to go to Russia. I went with a Catholic priest. He carried the Blessed Sacrament in a pix and together we did a Jericho walk round the Kremlin, throwing miraculous medals in the walls, and singing in tongues and praying for Gorbachev. When we came back to the UK, God gave us three signs which we took to be significant. The first was that Michael Bordeaux, who worked for Keston College, was interviewed on the radio the next day. He was very excited, saying something was happening in Russia and he had never been so hopeful before.

Then, on the front page of The Daily Telegraph was a photo of the Russian poetess Irina Ratushinskaya, who was a Christian and was supposedly imprisoned for life, but who had been suddenly and unexpectedly released. The following day, there was a photo of another Russian dissident, Sakarov, who had been locked up in Gorky, who had also been told that he could leave his detention. We saw great significance in this. Obviously it was not just our prayers, but the prayers of many Christians praying, which was at the root of the fall of the Soviet Empire and communism.

Then, after communism fell in Eastern Europe, I started to pray that it would happen in Russia, too, and that there would be a sign on Christmas day. And it happened! In 1991, Gorbachev appeared on television, where we had put our miraculous medals, to announce that the Soviet Union no longer existed. This was followed by President Yeltsin returning to the Orthodox Church all its churches and buildings.

  • Thanks to Kristina Cooper for help in gathering these reflections.

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