London 2018

Justin Welby RS

 London, July 2018, a delegation of "Jesus Celebration 2033" (JC2033) was received by the Head of the Anglican Communion, Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury.

Home to the Archbishops of Canterbury since the 13th century, the Lambeth Palace opens a door to us to meet Justin Welby, the 105th Primate of the Anglican Communion.

The archbishop welcomes us with simplicity and a smile and suggests that we begin the meeting with prayer, inviting a member of the delegation of JC2033 to do so.

After praying, Olivier Fleury, director of the Association, conveyed greetings from Pastor Nicky Gumbel, in director of "Alpha International" and Vicar of the Anglican parish of Holy Trinity in the London district of Brompton.

"I was baptized in this parish in 1956, I married there and three of our children were also baptized there," he exclaims, happy to learn that Olivier introduced these courses in France and French-speaking Switzerland.

Together we present the vision of JC2033: inviting all Churches to undertake a pilgrimage to 2033, for the 2000 years of the resurrection of Jesus Christ! In order to witness together the victory of life over death and to celebrate it!

After a moment of reflection, Justin Welby shares his opinion. First, the centrality of the resurrection: " I learned from the Orthodox the importance of living the resurrection every day. It must be at the centre of our Christian life ".

Then the pilgrimage to 2033 is essential. The path is as important as the destination and it must be accompanied by prayer.

Then such a journey will be the occasion to train people to evangelise. It begins in the home and should be the responsibility of all Christians. 90% of Christian parents believe it is important to teach children the Gospel. But only 30% transmit it themselves. The most important is the Church at home.

Finally, this march towards 2033 must be "a pilgrimage of holiness". The Archbishop insists on this point: The Church must show the world that she is filled with love. We need a great preparation between Christians and between Churches, otherwise it will only be a celebration among others. The Holy Spirit rejoices in celebrations if the Church is obedient to Jesus, especially to His prayer for unity according to chapter 17 of John's Gospel.

Justin Welby participates in the prayer and evangelism movement "Thy Kingdom come", carried by only three people but which has touched several million people, especially during the time between Ascension and Pentecost https://www.thykingdomcome.global

He invites us to meet them and be inspired by them. I find it interesting that you are a movement and not an institution. A movement does not seek to control but to leave direction to the Holy Spirit. It is he who gives true freedom in unity and diversity.

At the end of this beautiful meeting, J. Welby invited us to follow him in the chapel to pray Vespers. At the end of the service, he invokes the Holy Spirit with much intimacy for this march towards 2033 and for those who carry it.

Martin Hoegger