Office of Ecumenism

To Read The Latest Statement on Religious Freedom from the Canadian Council of Churches Click here

Pope's Address to Anglican-Catholic Commission

"The cause of unity is not an optional undertaking and the differences which divide us must not be seen as inevitable

Here is the statement given by the Pope  to the members of the Anglican-Roman Catholic International Commission.

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

1. It is a pleasure to be with you, the members of the Anglican-Roman Catholic International Commission. In these days you are gathered for a new session of your dialogue, which is now studying the relationship between the universal Church and the local Church, with particular reference to processes for discussions and decision making regarding moral and ethical questions. I cordially welcome you and wish you a successful meeting.

Your dialogue is the result of the historic meeting in 1966 between Pope Paul VI and Archbishop Ramsey, which gave rise to the first Anglican-Roman Catholic International Commission. On that occasion, they both prayed with hope for "a serious dialogue which, founded on the Gospels and on the ancient common traditions, [would] lead to that unity in truth for which Christ prayed" (The Common Declaration by Pope Paul VI and the Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Michael Ramsey, Rome, 24 March 1966).

We have not yet reached that goal, but we are convinced that the Holy Spirit continues to move us in that direction, notwithstanding new difficulties and challenges. Your presence here today is an indication of how the shared tradition of faith and history between Anglicans and Catholics can inspire and sustain our efforts to overcome the obstacles to full communion. Though we are fully aware of the seriousness of the challenges ahead, we can still realistically trust that together great progress will be made.

2. Shortly you will publish five jointly agreed statements of the second phase of the Anglican-Roman Catholic dialogue, with commentaries and responses. I offer my congratulations for this work. This reminds us that ecumenical relations and dialogue are not secondary elements of the life of the Churches. The cause of unity is not an optional undertaking and the differences which divide us must not be seen as inevitable. Some wish that, after fifty years, greater progress towards unity would have been achieved. Despite difficulties, we must not lose heart, but we must trust even more in the power of the Holy Spirit, who can heal and reconcile us, and accomplish what humanly does not seem possible.

3. There is a strong bond that already unites us which goes beyond all divisions: it is the testimony of Christians from different Churches and traditions, victims of persecution and violence simply because of the faith they profess. And not only now, that there are many of them: I think also of the martyrs of Uganda, half Catholics and half Anglicans. The blood of these martyrs will nourish a new era of ecumenical commitment, a fervent desire to fulfill the last will and testament of the Lord: that all may be one (cf. Jn 17:21). The witness by these our brothers and sisters demands that we live in harmony with the Gospel and that we strive with determination to fulfill the Lord's will for his Church.Today the world urgently needs the common, joyful witness of Christians, from the defence of life and human dignity to the promotion of justice and peace.

Together let us invoke the gifts of the Holy Spirit in order to be able to respond courageously to "the signs of the times" which are calling all Christians to unity and common witness. May the Holy Spirit abundantly inspire your work. Many thanks for your service.

[Original text English]

__________________

POPE FRANCIS ADDRESSES PENTECOSTAL PASTORS

Anyone interested in Catholic – Evangelical dialogue and relations will want to watch this remarkable video.  In it Pope Francis addresses a group of Pentecostal pastors and other leaders at a conference through a video made on an iPhone in his office with his friend Tony Palmer, a charismatic Anglican Bishop.  (That’s right, the Pope makes spontaneous iPhone videos in his office!)

Bishop Palmer addresses the group describing his friendship with Pope Francis and how the video came about, but also making several challenging remarks about the value of the sacraments, Catholic-Protestant agreement on justification, and ecumenical engagement.  While a Catholic might be a little nervous when Bishop Palmer suggests that Rome used to teach salvation by works (it would be more accurate to say that, until recently, it was difficult for many Protestants to understand Catholic teaching as anything but salvation by works), most of what Bishop Palmer says is very acceptable and encouraging to Catholics.  And, on top of that, Pope Francis offers a brilliant off-the-cuff (what else?) reflection on the true meaning of ecumenism.

If you only have a few minutes, you can skip ahead to about 31:30 to watch the Pope’s brief remarks (about 7 minutes long), but those with a bit more time may want to start as early as 4:30 when Bishop Palmer begins speaking.  He really starts getting into the Pope Francis story around 17:00.

Enjoy

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b5TwrG8B3ME

January 2016.
Pope Francis’ video on inter-religious dialogue for the Pope’s worldwide prayer network, the Apostleship of Prayer

What's New

Pentecost Ecumenical Service

Last updated on June 1, 2015

Ecumenical activities between the Regina Roman Catholic Archdiocese and the Anglican Diocese of Qu’Appelle have been steadily growing since the Covenant the two signed in January 2011. Anglican Deacon Michael Jackson, Co-Chair of the Anglican-Roman Catholic Covenant Committee, detailed some of the activities between the two churches in a report presented prior to a Pentecost Vespers Service held May 24 in Holy Rosary Cathedral. 

He described a host of activities in which Anglican and Catholic churches and communities came together for prayer services, including a workshop for First Nations Ministry, bible studies, marriage preparation courses, preaching in each other’s churches and many other activities. But in all of that he noted there remain “some churches not as enthusiastic about the Covenant and the committee is working to address that.” 

Regina Archdiocese Vicar General Reverend Lorne Crozon delivered a message from Archbishop Daniel Bohan who was unable...

Read More

Eastern Religions Explained

Last updated on May 28, 2015

"How much do you know about the Ukrainian Catholic Church,” asked, Saskatoon Eparchial Bishop Bryan Bayda as he passed around a microphone to people sitting in a u-shaped configuration at St. Basil’s Ukrainian Catholic Church Hall May 23? Bayda was the principal speaker as he and two other priests from Eastern Christian traditions spoke about Eastern Churches and the East. Reverend Sabah Kamorah discussed the Chaldean church and Reverend Gregory Hrynkiw demonstrated some of the rituals of the Ukrainian church in an afternoon session within St. Basil’s church.

Bayda reviewed the history of the eastern churches, the various schisms that occurred over the centuries and those that returned in full communion with Rome. The major schism occurred in 1054, said Bayda. “The debate got heated. There was a big discussion on ‘what do we believe’ and little things were being blown out of proportion.”  After centuries of discussion the Ukrainian Church was reunited with Rome in 1596, said...

Read More

Rachel Milbauer was four years old when war came to her small Polish community in 1939 and life dramatically changed for her and her family.

She told her story May 3 at a Holocaust Remembrance Program to a Beth Jacob Synagogue audience who listened intently as she described years of deprivation and fear.

She met Adam Shtibel after the war, they married, moved to Israel and eventually emigrated to Canada where she worked as a microbiologist research scientist and Adam worked in the aviation industry.

The lectern at the front of the Synagogue had six small candles in round glass containers, each representing one million Jews killed in the Holocaust. Each speaker used a large burning candle to light one of the small candles in memory of Holocaust victims.

Saskatchewan Lieutenant Governor Vaughn Solomon-Schofield brought greetings and lit the first candle. She was followed by Saskatchewan MLA for Regina South Bill Hutchinson representing the Premier of...

Read More

Spring Ecumenical Workshop Invitation

Last updated on May 1, 2015

Dear Pastors, Parishes, and Ecumenical Representatives

The Archdiocesan Ecumenical Commission is excited to announce our Spring Workshop on Eastern Christianity featuring keynote speaker Ukrainian Bishop Bryan Bayda C.Ss.R.  We will also be joined by special guests Fathers Gregory Hrinkiw (Ukrainian Catholic) and Sabah Kamora (Chaldean Catholic).  The Chaldean Catholic Church is historically based in Iraq, and Father Kamora will speak specifically on the situation of Christians in the Middle East.

The workshop will take place on Saturday May 23 at St. Basil’s Ukrainian Catholic Church in Regina.  More details are on the attached posted, that we request you post somewhere prominent in your parish.

Many of our Roman Catholic parishes include members of Eastern Catholic Churches that worship with us because they lack a local Church of their own, intermarriage with Roman Catholics, and a variety of other reasons.  But we often know very little about their...

Read More

Purim Festival

Last updated on March 12, 2015

It’s like a combination birthday and Halloween party; Children, most in costumes one might see at Hallowe’en, running around, chasing each other, or sitting and colouring at tables provided with whatever is needed. Some adults too wear costumes or masks. It’s called Purim and it’s one of the happiest festivals in the Jewish calendar. It took place March 5 at Beth Jacob Synagogue. “It’s a fun festival,” said Rabbi Jeremy Parnes. It commemorates an event that occurred during the reign of the ancient Persian King Ahasuerus who, at the behest of his beloved queen who was a Jew, delivered the Jews from an early Holocaust plotted by Haman, one of the king’s chamberlains. The March 5 festival began in the evening with a clown who engaged the children in several games followed with the reading of the Megillat Esther that tells the story.

Esther is the king’s favourite because of her beauty. After she is chosen by the king, her uncle Mordecai cautions her not to reveal she and her...

Read More

Rev. Mehan Speaks About Persecution

Last updated on January 28, 2015

Week of Prayer for Christian Unity comes to an end Sunday with the last celebration on February 1st. There were activities in several Regina Christian churches.

St.Paul’s Cathedral also celebrated the Feast of the Conversion of St. Paul and the four-year-old Covenant between the Diocese of Que’Appelle and the Archdiocese of Regina. It was a regular Eucharistic Service with guest preacher Reverend Dr. John Meehan, S.J. President of Campion College, University of Regina.

Wesley United Church celebrated an ecumenical service with a liturgy created by Brazilian Christians and the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity.

Meehan talked about the life of St. Paul, his persecution of Christians and his conversion on the road to Damascus. “St. Paul is a model for us in the Christian Church,” said Meehan as he talked about reconciliation. “Reconciliation is undermined daily,” said Meehan referring to several examples including committing violence in the name of...

Read More

World Religion Day

Last updated on January 22, 2015

Extra chairs were required to accommodate the almost 200 people who attended the annual World Religion Day held January 18 at Beth Jacob Synagogue. “It’s getting bigger every year,” said Krishan Kapila the first president of the Regina Multi-Faith Forum that now organizes the event each year.

World Religion Day brings together local representatives of religions who each present a short prayer, usually asking for peace and harmony among nations. This year, a few gave short speeches as well as a short prayer but all asked for peace and harmony. The Baha’i representative led off the 11 religions and asked that all nations be one. She was followed by a Buddhist monk dressed in the traditional saffron robe who suggested everyone knows the meaning of peace, but don’t realize it. They were followed by Hindu, Jain, Jewish, Muslim, Regina Que’Appelle Spiritual Care, Satya Sai Baba, Sikh, Unitarian and Christian traditions. Several of eastern religions chanted their prayer in the...

Read More

Chanuka First Night Lighting of the Menorah

Last updated on December 19, 2014

The tradition of lighting the first light of the Menorah on the first night of Chanuka began 40 years ago in front of Independence Hall, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania according to Rabbi Avrohom Simmmonds of Regina’s Chabat Centre. That tradition came to Saskatchewan last year and was continued this year December 16 in front of the Saskatchewan Legislative Building. Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall accompanied with Rabbi Avrohom and his father Rabbi Eliyohu Simmonds, who came in from Winnipeg for the event, in a crane lifted bucket lit the first lights on the 20 foot Menorah placed in front of the Saskatchewan Legislative Building.

Prior to the lighting ceremony, Wall, addressing the gathering in the Saskatchewan Gallery said the province is thankful for the Jewish population and the contributions it has made to the province. “It is a flame of hope that burns in places all over the world,” said Wall referring to the Menorah. Regina Mayor Michael Fougere also referred to the...

Read More

Ecumenism Workshop

Last updated on May 29, 2011

November 6, 2010

The decree on ecumenism that came out of Vatican II was a “Magna Carta” for Catholics, said Reverend John Radano, keynote speaker at the archdiocesan ecumenism workshop held November 6 at Miller High School.

Radano spent 24 years as a staff member of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, Vatican City. He is currently Adjunct Professor at Seton Hall University, South Orange, New Jersey.

Radano frequently referred to the Vatican document and the Ecumenical Directory as valuable resources for parish ecumenical representatives. He related the history of the ecumenical movement and several were surprised to learn it dates to a 1910 missionary’s conference held in Edinburgh, Scotland. “The missionaries were preaching different understanding of the Gospels,” said Radano and the conference sought to resolve the differences.

The World Council of Churches was established at the end of WW II and while the Roman Catholic Church did...

Read More

January 23, 2011

The sun shone brightly, the temperature climbed above freezing and Qu’Appelle Bishop Gregory Kerr-Wilson said it was a sign that God is blessing what “we are doing here today.”

January 23, 2011, will go down in southern Saskatchewan religious history as Kerr-Wilson and Regina Archbishop Daniel Bohan signed an historic Covenant committing the Roman Catholic and Anglican dioceses to an unprecedented level of joint services and cooperation. The Covenant was signed by the 2 bishops during an ecumenical prayer service that featured participants from St. Paul’s and Holy Rosary Cathedrals.

The Covenant is not a formal union, as Archbishop Bohan pointed out at the beginning of his homily. “We are coming together to celebrate what we believe in common as Christian Churches, and to celebrate what we have achieved in our ongoing search for deeper union and we are going to commit to do certain things together as disciples of Christ.”

The Covenant...

Read More

Pages