Service for Christian Unity,
Thursday, September, 23rd, 2021
The wonder of fraternity
How different people are! The times, the climate, the culture, the environment, everything separates them. Hence the irreducible difference in problems, worries, tastes, modes of expression. It is not just that mindsets are opposed; that would still be a way of getting to know each other: but they are often foreigners to each other. In solidarity with each other, the generations are nonetheless isolated from each other.
These remarks generate an incurable sadness for the eager observer of human communion.
But suddenly here is the wonder: those among them who seemed the most foreign, those whom everyone cannot help but avoid without remedy, here they are suddenly very close. Here they are brothers, vibrantly united, answering the same call, communing in the same love. It is as if the same blood flows through their veins. Children of the same Church, they have all received the same Christ as an inheritance. Nourished in the same faith, they are drenched by the same Spirit, who makes them spontaneously react in the same way, and by this sign they understand everything about each other.
Henri de Lubac, Meditation on the Church, Aubier 1953, p 44
Prepared by our brothers and sisters in Rome
To adapt according to the place of worship
1/ The Anglican Church has run a Centre in Rome since 1966 which aims to encourage exchanges and meetings between the two traditions, Anglican and Roman Catholic. Lord, bless this initiative, walk with Archbishop Ian Ernest (the Mauritian director of the Anglican Centre in Rome) along with his wife Camila in this work of communion, and enable us to move forward together on the path of unity.
2/ We pray for everyone who has spent time to refresh and strengthen their covenant with you, in retreats or Christian gatherings, over this summer. Be close to them as they return to everyday life, come and bless their families, console those who suffer from loneliness, and make us all attentive to the presence of the poor and the foreigner.
3/ We entrust to you the brothers and sisters of the Chemin Neuf Community who belong to ecclesial traditions other than the Roman Catholic Church. We thank you for their courage and for the commitment of their lives to Christian unity. Come and bless them, and always give us the inventiveness to respond together to the calls you never cease to address to us.