SINGAPORE – We all have the responsibility to evangelize simply by virtue of the fact that we are Catholics, is the message Charles and Sue Whitehead delivered to the 1,000 or so crowd at a rally organized by SACCRE on Jan 28 at Risen Christ Parish.We don’t need to have a degree in Theology or be a religious to do that, they explained. But it has to come from an inner conviction of who we are – and that, only the Holy Spirit can supply.

In his talk peppered with humour, Charles Whitehead said that God sets up opportunities for evengelization even when we feel we are not prepared for it. Sue also shared her own experiences with the audience.

Charles and Sue have had a packed schedule since their arrival in Singapore.

On Jan 22, Charles addressed about 800 leaders of City Harvest Church at the invitation of Pastor Kong Hee. Since it was the centennial of Christian Unity Week, he spoke about "building bridges".

On Jan 24 and 25, Charles and Sue, together with Nikki Whitehead (no relations with Charles or Sue), gave an orientation and training programme for "CaFE" (Catholic Faith Exploration) to leaders of charismatic prayer groups and New Evangelisation Team.

On the two days following, the team gave a Leadership Seminar for 300 leaders from the various Charismatic Prayer Groups in the various parishes. Charles shared on the nature of Catholic Charismatic Renewal as compared to Pentecostalism, and encouraged all Catholics to experience the outpouring of the Holy Spirit for a life-changing experience and deepening of one’s relationship with Jesus. The fruit of this is a greater thirst for the Sacraments and the word of God, which will enable us to live out our Catholic lives to the fullest.

Then came the rally at Risen Christ.

The next day, Charles and Sue addressed Catholic Youth leaders at CANA – The Catholic Centre challenging them to the call of leadership, and at the same time reminding them to draw strength from experienced leaders who could provide encouragement and spiritual mentoring in their journey.

Charles Whitehead is a former president of International Catholic Charismatic Renewal Services (ICCRS), based in Vatican City. He served as president for 10 years. He is currently Chairman of International Charismatic Consultancy, an Ecumenical Body connected to ICCRS and the Pontifical Council for the Laity. He is also active in promoting Catholic Charismatic Renewal worldwide, particularly in the European Sub-Committee for ICCRS.

Charles and Sue Whitehead were last down in Singapore in 2004 when they spoke at a weekend Charismatic Conference, organized by SACCRE. - By Vincent Especkerman

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