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Monday, 3 April 2017

St George's Madrid: a parish with an international and ecumenical outlook


Mothers' Union Members, Madrid
It is no surprise given the growing number of members from Africa, that the Mothers' Union is well represented in St. George's Madrid. My recent parish visit was on Mothering Sunday which was an appropriate occasion for the members of the MU to wear their distinctive uniforms.

St George's looks outward to the world Church in so many ways. For instance during my visit I attended a session of one of their Lenten Bible studies at which they were using material produced by the mission agency USPG, which draws upon the experiences of Christians around the world. The session I attended challenged us as Christians in our relations with those of other faiths, reflecting on the experience of St Peter in the Acts of the Apostles, supplemented by moving testimonies gathered by USPG from members of the Church of Pakistan. I was very pleased to see the faithful of one of our parishes working on the important issue of interfaith dialogue.

Discussions with the Church Council
The study group was led by Celia Paterson, who is the Reader in St. George's. At the 1130 Sunday Eucharist I had the pleasure of licensing Celia for a further three years. Also at the Mass, several persons received the sacrament of Confirmation.

Celia Paterson assisting me with the confirmands

Confirmation Candidates receive Holy Communion
The Chaplain, the Revd Paul Ormrod, keeps busy ecumenically in Madrid. He arranged for me to have a meeting with the Diocesan Ecumenical Officer, the Revd Manuel Barrios Prieto, who is also a scholar of the Mozarabic Rite. Padre Manuel was accompanied by a priest, Fr Raúl, who had only been ordained 5 days earlier, who was brought along to learn about Anglicanism. No better place for him to learn than at St George's, from Fr Paul Ormrod!

Fr Raúl, Fr Paul, Fr Manuel

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