Participants praying together at the ecumenical event held at the Church of St Mary of the Angels. Participants praying together at the ecumenical event held at the Church of St Mary of the Angels.
Protestants and Catholics rested in the Spirit as prayer teams from various Churches prayed over them at the Church of St Mary of the Angels.

The prayer session, which lasted more than an hour, was a highlight of the Ecumenical Charismatic Healing Service held on Oct 30.

The event, which had the theme, Be Reconciled, was one of several efforts by both Catholics and Protestants to promote Christian unity. About 1,600 Christians from various Churches participated in it.

Methodist Bishop Dr Wee Boon Hup and Archbishop William Goh, both of whom spoke at the service, formed one of the 40 prayer teams.

The evening started with worship leaders inviting participants to pray for their fellow Christians sitting next to them.

In his homily, Bishop Wee spoke about the healing that God offers to all Christians. “The first cure is that we are forgiven of our sins, in Jesus Christ...We are saved from the presence of sin in our lives,” he said.
Archbishop William Goh and Methodist Bishop Dr Wee Boon Hup wait for people to come to them for prayers during the Ecumenical Charismatic Healing Service.Archbishop William Goh and Methodist Bishop Dr Wee Boon Hup wait for people to come to them for prayers during the Ecumenical Charismatic Healing Service.

Referring to Isaiah 53:3-4, he said that Christians can receive physical and emotional healing as well.

The homily was followed by sharings from representatives of Servants of the Lord, an ecumenical Charismatic community founded in Singapore in 1986.

Mr Lim Tau Kok, a Methodist, shared about the history and work of his community, while Mr Andrew Lee, a Catholic, spoke about how the community touched his life and strengthened his faith.

Before giving the final blessing for the event, Archbishop Goh stressed “the need to strengthen Christian unity because all of us, we are brothers and sisters in Christ”.

“If Christian unity were to really be a force in this world, to really be witnesses, then unity must be a sign,” he said. “Divided amongst ourselves, we cannot be witnesses, we will be counter-witnesses,” Archbishop Goh added.

Participants later chatted with one another over light refreshments. When asked about their thoughts on the service, several participants told CatholicNews they found the event useful in promoting Christian unity.

“It’s really quite beautiful that people can put their differences aside and focus on Jesus and His love,” said Mr Benjamin Chia, 29, from the Church of the Holy Cross.

“It was good to see different forms of worship,” commented Ms Claire Ho, 28, a Presbyterian. “It’s also very heartwarming to know we all worship the same God.”

On the other hand, Ms Michelle Loo, 30, a Charismatic Christian, said she felt there were still lingering “tensions” among Christians. “There are still reservations from what I observed today,” she said, “but I can feel the genuine intention to live as a community and that the effort is there to promote unity.”

Other participants suggested more activities to forge closer ties among Christians. These included having talks by Catholic or Protestant representatives over dinner, or organising movie screenings.

The Oct 30 service was the third to be held annually, and has seen a steady rise in attendance since it was first organised.

By Jared Ng
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