Emmetten, Switzerland, August 20-27, 1988


The fourth meeting of the International Catholic-Pentecostal Dialogue was held in Emmetten, Switzerland, August 20-27, 1988. The session took place at the Hotel Heimstätte, which is also the headquarters of the Swiss Pentecostal Mission. This is the third phase of international dialogue (the first began in 1972) co- sponsored by the Vatican Secretariat for Promoting Christian Unity and certain representatives of the classical Pentecostal Churches. The co-chairmen are Rev. Kilian McDonnell, O.S.B. (St. John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota U.S.A.) and Rev. Justus du Plessis (Apostolic Faith Mission of South Africa).

During this third phase, the dialogue has focused on different aspects of Koinonia, or the Church as Communion. The topic in 1988 was "Koinonia and Baptism". Issues discussed included Pentecostal and Roman Catholic views on baptism, the relationship of baptism and faith, the relationship of baptism to the Church, and the baptism of the Holy Spirito A paper was co-authored for the Pentecostal side by Dr. Cecil M. Robeck, Assemblies of God, Pasadena, California (U.S.A) and Dr. Jerry L. Sandidge, Assemblies of God, Springfield, Missouri (U.S.A), who is also Pentecostal co- secretary. Rev. Kilian McDonnel O.S.B., and Rev. John Redford (London, England), co-authored a presentation for the Roman Catholic side.

The participants were warmly welcomed to Heirnstätte S.P.M. by its Director, Rev. Jakob Zopfi, Secretary of the Pentecostal World Conference, and an officer in the Pentecostal European Fellowship, and President of the Swiss Pentecostal Mission, who gave an overview of the Pentecostal movement in Switzerland. During the week, the participants were welcomed by the Most Reverend Johannes Vonderach, Bishop of the Roman Catholic diocese of Chur, within which Emmetten is found. In the middle of the week the joint commission toured the Benedictine Monastery or Engelberg, Switzerland, which had been established in the twelfth century.

Other Roman Catholic participants included Rev. Raniero Cantalarnessa, O.F.M. Cap., Convento Cappuccini, Milano (Italy): Rev. John C. Haughey, S.J., St. Peters Church, Charlotte, North Carolina (U.S.A); Prof. Hervé Legrand, O.P., Institut Catholique Paris (France); Sister Helen Rolfson, O.S.F., St. John's University, Collegeville, Minnesota (USA); and Msgr. John A. Radano, Secretariat for Promoting Christian Unity (Vatican City), who is Catholic co-secretary.

Official delegates sent to the dialogue for the Pentecostal side included Rev. Hugh R. Edwards, Church of God of Prophecy, Artesia, California, (U.S.A); Dr. James D. Jenkins, Church of God, Jackson, Mississippi, (USA); Dr. François P. Moller, Apostolic Faith Mission, (South Africa); Dr. Coleman Phillips, International Church of the Foursquare Gospel, Escondido, California, (U.S.A); Rev. Mitchell Belobaba, International Church of the Foursquare Gospel Church of Canada, Vancouver, B.C., (Canada).

Other Pentecostal participants included Dr. Omar Cabrera, Vision de Futuro, Santa Fe (Argentina); Rev. Edward Czajko, Pentecostal Pastor, Warsaw; (Poland); Dr. Howard M. Ervin, Oral Roberts University, Tulsa, Oklahoma, (USA); Rev. Bernice Gerard, Sunday Line Communications, Vancouver B.C., (Canada); Dr. Miroslav Volf, Biblical Theological Institute, Zagreb/Osijek (Yugoslavia).

This series will be completed with the fifth meeting to be held in 1989.


[Information Service 68 (1988/III-IV 162-163)]