*** DEBUG END ***

Pope joins Welby and Sentamu for Pentecost service

29 May 2020


Pope Francis during his live-streamed Angelus prayer at the Vatican, on Sunday

Pope Francis during his live-streamed Angelus prayer at the Vatican, on Sunday

THE power of the Holy Spirit is needed “more than ever” in a world that is “experiencing a tragic famine of hope”, Pope Francis will say as part of an online service with the Archbishops of Canterbury and York on Pentecost Sunday.

The service, which marks the end of the global prayer movement for evangelism, Thy Kingdom Come, will be the first time that the Pope has joined the Archbishops online. It will be live-streamed on YouTube and the Church of England’s social media channels.

Thy Kingdom Come has grown since its introduction in 2016 into a movement that attracts large numbers to gatherings and events at Pentecost. This year it has moved online owing to the pandemic, and many Christians will be participating from their homes (News, 22 May).

In his recorded message, Pope Francis reflects on the impact of the virus around the world, urging Christians to be “more deeply united as witnesses of mercy for the human family so severely tested in these days”. They should “ask the Spirit for the gift of unity, for only if we live as brothers and sisters can we spread the spirit of fraternity”.

He goes on to say: “Today, more than ever, it is necessary to implore the Holy Spirit to pour forth into our hearts the life of God, who is love. Indeed, if there is to be a better future, our hearts must change for the better.

“Today, our world is experiencing a tragic famine of hope. How much pain is all around us, how much emptiness, how much inconsolable grief. Let us, then, become messengers of the comfort bestowed by the Spirit. Let us radiate hope, and the Lord will open new paths as we journey towards the future.”

Archbishop Welby will deliver the sermon; Dr Sentamu, who is due to retire in in a week’s time (News, 5 October 2018), will give the final blessing. The creed will be led by the Coptic Archbishop of London, Archbishop Angaelos.

The prayers, including ones written by children, will be led by the Pentecostal president of Church Together in England, Pastor Agu Irukwu. Heidi Crowter, a young advocate for people with Down’s syndrome (News, 9 February), and Thelma Commey, the present Methodist youth president, will also contribute.

The worship leader Matt Redman and the choirs of St Martin-in-the-Fields, directed by Andrew Earis, will be leading the music. The service will conclude with the première of a specially commissioned version of “Amazing grace” by a range of singers from across the UK.

The service, which begins at 9 a.m. on Sunday, will be subtitled and interpreted into British Sign Language throughout.

Browse Church and Charity jobs on the Church Times jobsite

Forthcoming Events

Green Church Awards

Closing date: 30 June 2024

Read more details about the awards


Festival of Preaching

15-17 September 2024

The festival moves to Cambridge along with a sparkling selection of expert speakers

tickets available



Festival of Faith and Literature

28 February - 2 March 2025

The festival programme is soon to be announced sign up to our newsletter to stay informed about all festival news.

Festival website


ViSIt our Events page for upcoming and past events 

Welcome to the Church Times


To explore the Church Times website fully, please sign in or subscribe.

Non-subscribers can read four articles for free each month. (You will need to register.)