Monsignor Jean-Marc Eychenne, the Roman Catholic Bishop of Pamiers (centre of photograph wearing the jacket with the red zip) has, for some years, hosted an Ecumenical Group attended by members of the Roman Catholic and French Protestant Churches as well as by Anglicans from our own Chaplaincy. We meet 3 to 4 times each year to discuss matters of faith which are of common interest to us all and look for ways to co-operate more closely. Matters such as training for ministry, sharing confirmation classes, sharing mission work and even women's ordination are explored from our different theological viewpoints.
We are deeply grateful to the Monsignor for having extended an invitation to our Chaplaincy, which has helped us to build wonderful working relationships as well as deep friendships with our Christian brothers and sisters. Our group met this week in Lezat when the topic was differences in each denomination's marriage preparation and ceremonies.
Sadly, at this meeting we also bade farewell to Protestant Pastor Bill Johnson (5th from left) who is returning to his home in the USA after 3 years' ministry in France. He will be greatly missed by us all.
In October, the Anglican Chaplaincy will be hosting our next meeting, at which the group have expressed a wish to consider more closely the priesthood of women - an issue which is still very controversial.
Please include the Bishop and all those who minister, whatever their denomination, in your prayers.