What is Catholic Charismatic Renewal?
At the time of the Second Vatican Council, Pope John 23rd prayed for a “new Pentecost” for the Church. Shortly after this, a group of young people were gathered for prayer at Dusquene University, USA, and asked God for a greater outpouring of the Holy Spirit in their lives and the life of the Church. They came away from the weekend, renewed in faith, with a much deeper love of God, a greater desire to read the Scriptures, and began to experience some of the gifts of the Holy Spirit listed in 1 Corinthians 13. They found that when they prayed for people they were healed, and found themselves praying in tongues in their prayer time.
From this point, this fire of the Holy Spirit spread throughout the Catholic Church, right around the world, and now there are millions of Catholics who have experienced the “release” of the Holy Spirit in their lives. This has helped them to live and share their faith and love for God in a much deeper way.
This movement of the Spirit in the hearts and lives of individuals has become known as Catholic Charismatic Renewal. In 1975, at its third International Conference on the Charismatic Renewal in the Catholic Church, held in Rome, the Pope addressed the estimated 10,000 people present, saying: “the Church and the world need more than ever that “the miracle of Pentecost should be continued in history”. “For such a world, more and more secularized, nothing is more necessary than the witness of this “spiritual renewal”, which we see the Holy Spirit stirring today, in such diverse regions and circles. Its manifestations are varied: deep communion of hearts and close contact with God in faithfulness to the commitments undertaken at Baptism, and in prayer that is often in groups, in which each one expresses himself freely, thus helping, supporting and nourishing the prayer of others.”
Pope, John Paul II also acknowledged the sincerity and value of Charismatic Renewal and other ecclesial movements, which have sprung up over the last 30 years. As we entered the new Millennium, and the “new springtime for Christianity”, Pope John Paul II asked the whole Church to be open and docile to the Holy Spirit. Catholic Charismatic Renewal welcomes all people to share in its activities.