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Italy: meeting of Catholic Charismatic Renewal leaders

 A twelve-day meeting of an estimated 1,000 leaders of the Catholic Charismatic Renewal Movement started yesterday at the Mariapoli Centre in Castelgandolfo on the theme "Twelve Days of Blessings." Leaders of other ecclesial movements, such as Chiara Lubich of the Focolare, and of other Christian Churches are also expected to attend. Cardinal James Francis Stafford and Bishop Stanislaw Rylko, respectively president and secretary of the Pontifical Council for the Laity, will preside at the meeting's main celebrations. The participants will reflect on the current situation of the movement and look at some of the challenges facing it in the future. The twelve-day encounter has three distinct phases: the meeting of leaders, a four-day spiritual retreat led by Fr Raniero Cantalamessa, OFM Cap., preacher of the papal household, on the theme 'Holiness, a Challenge for the Third Millennium,' and a trip of several days to a number of shrines in south central Italy, including that of St Padre Pio in San Giovanni Rotondo. The Catholic Charismatic Renewal Movement was born on university campuses in 1967 in the United States. It spread rapidly and is now present in 70 countries on five continents through a "strong rediscovery of the faith and the action of the Holy Spirit in the lives of Christians," according to a communique published about the meeting. Source:VIS