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Saturday, 22 May 2021

Pentecost - the sign of the Church's universal embrace

On the day of Pentecost, according to the Acts of the Apostles, there was amazement in the crowd which was gathered from the then known world. People as diverse as Parthians to Cretans to Arabs all heard the disciples speaking in their native language. This was the sign that the Church's destiny was to be open to all human nations and cultures.

In this diocese we try to live this Pentecost vision, witnessing to our unity as a community, no matter where on the globe we are from. The licensed clergy who lead our parishes themselves hail from 24 countries (according to my last count), from Canada to Congo.

And the list is growing. The newest priest to be licenced is the Very Revd Dr Ishanesu Sextus Gusha, who is the Chaplain of St Philip and St James, Palma de Mallorca. He comes from Zimbabwe where he was the Dean of the Cathedral of St Mary and All Saints in Harare. Appropriately for our international diocese, he has travelled extensively in Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Europe and North America (where he completed his Masters degree; his doctorate in New Testament studies is from the University of Pretoria). He is accompanied by his wife Caroline and three boys, Ishanesu Jr, Theophilus, and Theodore. 

Fr Ishanesu, I know that since you were a child you loved the sea. So from landlocked Zimbabwe to the island of Mallorca - welcome!

A prayer for Pentecost:

Father, you have given all peoples one common origin. It is your will that they be gathered together as one family in yourself. Fill our hearts with the fire of your love and with the desire for justice for all. May there be an end to division, strife and war. May there be a dawning of a truly human society built on love and peace. We ask this in the name of Jesus, our Lord.