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Praise motorcade, pray-a-thon part of CCR anniversary celebrations

A number of activities have been planned to celebrate the golden jubilee of the Catholic Charismatic Renewal (CCR). The theme chosen by the anniversary planning committee is Revolution of the Holy Spirit.

Activities begin this weekend with a Pray-a-thon on Trinity TV (November 19–21) and a nationwide musical praise motorcade this Sunday from 9 a.m. to noon. CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE MOTORCADE ROUTES 

Other activities include the first virtual National CCR Conference January 8–10, 2021 and the celebration of the Sunday of the Word of God on January 24; a Gos-calypso showcase in February; a youth retreat in March, and a leaders retreat in April; a novena and rally in May; a youth talent show in July; a panel discussion in August; and a magazine launch in November.

Events for June, September and December 2021 are to be announced. Tobago will not be left out. The anniversary celebration ends with the biennial Caribbean CCR Conference carded for January 7–9, 2022.

A few of the activities were highlighted during the Anniversary Mass on November 8 at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. Archbishop Jason Gordon, a member of the Living Water Community, was the chief celebrant and homilist.

In his homily on the Sunday Gospel reading (Mt 25:1–13, parable of the ten bridesmaids), the Archbishop told the congregation that to be invited into the banquet hall (Heaven) “we have to know Jesus Christ…but if He ent know you, crapaud smoke yuh pipe!” It is Him who has to know you, he remarked and “that means our relationship with Christ has to be a personal, special, profound relationship”.

“Without a friendship with Jesus, there is no lamp, there is no oil,” he said, referring to the gospel. “How many of our prayer groups run out of joy?” the Archbishop asked, with leaders thinking only of power and control, and members “vex with this one and that one”.

He said the CCR was “an invitation to a personal relationship with Jesus Christ” and hoped members remain open to the Holy Spirit and not allow the Spirit to recede. If the Spirit recedes the Renewal may become “like other parts of the institutional church where the charism and the Spirit are not leading and guiding where we need to go”.

He challenged the physically distanced congregation to continue developing “a rhythm of prayer, of reading scripture, of sacrifice, charity, good works, and doing what God is asking us to do”.

Archbishop Gordon reminded all to say daily “Bend my heart to your will, O Lord” adding that the lamp “is doing the will of God” and “our call is to open our heart wide to God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit”.

During the homily Archbishop Gordon remembered a few persons who contributed to the Renewal in the last 50 years, like Fr Michael Moses, ‘Aunty Babsie’ Bleasdell, and husband and wife Cuthbert and Daphne Meijias. He also noted the influence of the Benedictine monks who took the CCR “under its wing” in the early years, sheltering and actively forming its members. Before the final blessing he thanked ‘Sister Debbie’ de Rosia for her leadership of the Renewal not only in this Archdiocese but in the Caribbean.

Cross-section of congregants during the anniversary Mass

—Raymond Syms

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