Pope Francis joins Archbishops of Canterbury and York for the Pentecost service this Sunday 31st May
He will deliver a special message for the virtual service for Pentecost Sunday – the day Christians celebrate the coming of the Holy Spirit and the birth of the Church.
The service marks the finale of this year’s Thy Kingdom Come, an annual ecumenical global prayer movement for evangelisation between Ascension Day and Pentecost across 172 countries.
In his message, the Pope calls on all Christians to seek a fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit in a world “experiencing a tragic famine of hope”.
For full details visit the Thy Kingdom Come website.
The Pope’s heartfelt message calls on all Christians to seek a fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit in order that they might be bearers of Christ’s love, light and hope, in a world “experiencing a tragic famine of hope” but also urges a turning away from the “selfish pursuit of success without caring for those left behind’ and to be united in facing the “pandemics of the virus and of hunger, war, contempt for life and indifference to others.”
In the service - which can be seen on the Church of England’s platforms (website, Facebook page and YouTube channel) from 9am on Sunday 31 May – he will say:
“Today, more than ever, it is necessary to implore the Holy Spirit to pour forth into our hearts the life of God, who is love. Indeed, if there is to be a better future, our hearts must change for the better.
“Today our world is experiencing a tragic famine of hope. How much pain is all around us, how much emptiness, how much inconsolable grief. Let us, then, become messengers of the comfort bestowed by the Spirit. Let us radiate hope, and the Lord will open new paths as we journey towards the future.”
Reflecting on the Coronavirus Pandemic, the Pope implores Christians worldwide to be “more deeply united as witnesses of mercy for the human family so severely tested in these days” and “to ask the Spirit for the gift of unity, for only if we live as brothers and sisters can we spread the spirit of fraternity.”
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, will deliver the sermon. The service also includes contributions from other senior UK church leaders including the Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, due to retire in June (who will give the final blessing), The Coptic Orthodox Archbishop of London, His Eminence Archbishop Angaelos (saying the creed) and prayers from Pastor Agu Irukwu, the Pentecostal president of Church Together in England.
Heidi Crowter, a young advocate for people with Down’s Syndrome and Thelma Commey, the current Methodist Youth president, will also participate in the service.
The service includes a number of prayers from children and music by internationally renowned worship leader Matt Redman and the choirs of St Martin-in-the-Fields directed by Andrew Earis.
A special version of the well-known hymn Amazing Grace, bringing together a diverse range of singers from across the UK, will also premiere, concluding the service.
A PRAYER FOR ALL THOSE AFFECTED BY CORONAVIRUS
Keep us, good Lord,
under the shadow of your mercy.
Sustain and support the anxious,
be with those who care for the sick,
and lift up all who are brought low;
that we may find comfort
knowing that nothing can separate us from your love
in Christ Jesus our Lord.