New Steps on an Ancient Pilgrimage: Walking Together from Canterbury to Rome

1 August 2016 • Persistent link:

Thirty-six IARCCUM Anglican and Catholic bishops, representing 19 different regions where Anglicans and Catholics live side by side in significant numbers, will meet in Canterbury and Rome for a summit meeting in October of this year. The bishops will arrive in Canterbury for the first leg of their meeting on 30th September. They will be staying at the Lodge in Canterbury Cathedral, will take part in the liturgical life of the Cathedral, and will make a pilgrim visit to the shrine of St Thomas à Becket, where Pope John Paul II and Archbishop Robert Runcie prayed together.

The purpose of the meeting will be to discover new ways where, on the basis of the agreed statements of ARCIC, Catholics and Anglicans can give greater witness to their common faith, and particularly how they can collaborate in mission to the world. The meeting will begin by listening to the bishops’ own pastoral challenges. The bishops will also reflect on the previous documents of IARCCUM, and particularly, Growing Together in Unity and Mission. They will be accompanied by Dr Anna Rowlands of Durham University, who will be present at all the bishops’ discussions and will resource the meeting from her expertise in Catholic and Anglican Social Theology.

The bishops will transfer to Rome on 3rd October and will be staying near the Vatican. They will make a pilgrimage to the tombs of the apostles, Ss Peter and Paul, and will participate in the vespers celebrated by Pope Francis and Archbishop Justin Welby at San Gregorio al Celio on 5th October, to mark the 50th anniversary of the historic meeting between Pope Paul VI and Archbishop Michael Ramsey. At these vespers, it is anticipated that the bishops will be mandated by Pope Francis and Archbishop Welby in their ecumenical mission. On the same day, the bishops will also attend an academic symposium at the Gregorian University.