By agency reporter
APRIL 4, 2016
Pope Francis and senior Methodist representatives from around the world will take part in a series of events to mark the opening of the new Methodist Ecumenical Office in Rome.
Attendees at the events, taking place between 5-7 April 5th 2016, include representatives from the Vatican, the Church of England, the World Methodist Council, the United Methodist Church and the Methodist Church in Britain.
World Methodist Council President, Bishop Paulo Lockmann, Vice-President Gillian Kingston and General Secretary Bishop Ivan Abrahams, the Rev Gareth J Powell, Secretary of the Methodist Conference, other representatives from the Methodist Church in Britain, Deacon Alessandra Trotta President of the Methodist Churches in Italy, representatives of the European Methodist Council, the United Methodist Church and The Wesley (Rome) will be present.
A service of dedication and the opening of the centre at Ponte Sant` Angelo will be attended by representatives of the Vatican, Archbishop David Moxon, the Director of the Anglican Centre and the representative of the Archbishop of Canterbury in Rome, members of the diplomatic corps and other churches in Rome.
Next Thursday the Methodist delegation will be received by Pope Francis in a private audience at the Vatican followed by a meeting with members of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity.
The Rev Dr Tim Macquiban, Director of the Methodist Ecumenical Office in Rome, said: "We ask you to hold the ecumenical work of the office in your prayers at this important stage of its development.
"This initiative gives Methodists worldwide the opportunity to contribute in a continuing ecumenical dialogue, promoting ecumenical understanding through the likes of educational programmes."
* The Methodist Church in Britain http://www.methodist.org.uk/