Posted by: catholicrelics | October 2, 2009

Minster Dean says in the search for Christian unity we must surrender to God’s wisdom

, originally uploaded by Catholic Church (England and Wales).

Representatives from Christian denominations gathered in the York Minster tonight for a service dedicated to Christian unity.

The Catholic Bishops of Leeds and Middlesbrough were amongst the invited guests, along with clerics and pastors from the United Reform, Methodist and Anglican Churches.

The Dean of Minster, The Very Revd Keith Jones, gave the main address and highlighted that today marked the anniversary of the five Malines Conversations which began in December 1921 and ended in October 1926. These brought together Anglicans and Catholics who shared a passion for Christian unity; these conversations involved Charles Lindley Wood (Viscount Halifax); Fr Etienne Fernand Portal and Cardinal Mercier of Malines.

Linking this historical anniversary to the visit of the Relics, the Dean said:

‘Here tonight we meet in the presence of the relics of St Therese, which, in the care of the Carmelite guardians we are very grateful to welcome to York Minster. We Anglicans make no claim to call Therese our own: she lived and died in an impeccably Roman Catholic milieu. But it is a central quality of Therese that she wished to speak to the heart of anyone who would read about the truth she had found and proved in her life, and her genius is in her fearless honesty and directness. Those who love and revere her find that nobody speaks more strongly of the freedom of God to do as he wishes, and to love those whom he will love.’

‘Therese herself prayed for people at or even beyond the edge, as we measure it, of the boundaries of covenanted grace. That, she saw, was where priests should be. When we come into the presence of this sign of the Kingdom of Christ, these relics of the Little Flower, we are all humbled. And whoever we are, we are at one in this: that we ask God to have mercy on us. Even in the difficult, searching mazes of our search for the unity of the Church, we have to be prepared for God, whose wisdom sometimes seem foolish to us, to do what he will do. We pray that we may not impede Him.’

‘So what we do tonight is simple, and little. All the prayers of Mercier and Halifax and Portal are summed up in the universal prayer of those who live by Christ: Thy will be done. This we can pray together, and this needs be all our prayer for now.’


  1. Yesterday afternoon I left Hull at 4.30 pm bound for York Minster with my 14 yr old son Adam, my sister-in-law Belinda and her 13year old son Thomas. Feeling very happy to go and see Saint Therese, we were all excited to be going.

    Upon arrival we were very lucky to see her relics greeted by the Dean, Carmalite nuns, Catholic Bishops and of course all the people who had come from near and far.

    It was a beautiful occasion and everyone clapped when she was taken from the car we were all so happy.
    Later that evening we attended the 7.30 Ecumenical service which was very moving and I felt the main address by The Very Revd Keith Jones was illuminating, heartfelt and inspiring. We all went home happy, each with our own special moment shared with Saint Therese. So leaving our Roses and our petitions we took with us in our hearts her love from God. Thankyou

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