Catholic Charasmatic Groups?

What is the Catholic Charismatic Movement? Is it approved by the Church?

Here is what Wikipedia has to say

The way it sounds, that is like a midway point between Catholicism and Pentecostalism. I personally would stay away from anything Pentecostal based on family experiences, but your free to express it if you wish

The Catholic Charismatic Renewal has enjoyed papal approval since its beginning in 1967 when college students on retreat experienced the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. The Baptism of the Holy Spirit is not a new Sacrament, but a release of the gifts each of us has received by virtue of our Baptism and Confirmation. The Baptism of the Holy Spirit is the experience of Pentecost as described in Acts.
“Devotions to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, the Divine Mercy of Jesus, and the Blessed Mother are frequently part of parish life and often include a novena, nine days of prayer associated with the devotion. Prayer groups such as those sponsored by Charismatic Renewal, Cursillo, Marriage Encounter, and Teens for Christ have both a strong liturgical foundation as well as a vibrant devotional component.” (United States Catholic Catechism for Adults, p.297).
The gifts, or charisms, received by members of the Charismatic Renewal are meant to build up the Church. Members are laity as well as religious and clergy. Vocations to the priesthood and religious life have begun or been strengthen by the experience.

In my opinion, this is another sign we are moving away from Catholic culture to Protestant culture. Are we doomed? Christ will fulfill his promise but will it be to those who have chosen not to be Catholic?

The Charismatic gifts were given by God to the Catholic Church. As with all other Christian Truths, if they exist among our Protestant brethren, they do so because of the Catholic Church.

The removal of the gifts of the Spirit from the Teaching authority appointed by Christ has resulted in very bad abuses. Jesus intends these gifts for the building up of the church,not for chaos.

Here is a good article on EWTN’s website that begins with the “ecclesiastical response” to the Catholic Charismatic Renewal movement:

In it, you see that John Paul II said of the movement: “I am convinced that this movement is a very important component of the entire renewal of the Church.”

Here are some of the addresses the popes have made to the leaders of the Charismatic Renewal Movement. Read them for yourself and decide what the Church really thinks of this movement (as opposed to what any of us here say):

Benedict XVI
*]October 31, 2008

John Paul II
*]November 7, 2002
*]April 24, 2000
*]October 30, 1998
*]June 1, 1998
*]April 4, 1998
*]November 9, 1996
*]November 14, 1994
*]September 18, 1993
*]March 14, 1992
*]December 7, 1991
*]May 15, 1987
*]May 7, 1981

If you want to find even more, just do a site search of the Vatican for “charismatic”.

I wonder if the papal approval is of something different than can be seen at Catholic charismatic communities today. Not sure the two line up.


Yesterday at the Rite of Election in Scranton PA, Bishop Martino mentioned (out of a list of parish groups) that the charismatic groups are worthy and encouraged to be joined.

If my Bishop suggests that I do something, I’m definitely going to be open to it. He is the shepherd, as are our Popes.

The only danger is the same danger that exists in all forms of prayer: when you listen to what you want, and not what God wants of you or gives to you.

If you are truly open to prayer with focus on God and Mary, you should be fine. If you do not believe you can do that, it is not going to harm you either if you do not go.

Yet, like St. John of the Cross, I prefer to be weary of all mystical events and disregard them… but God or Mary tend to keep knocking if something is ignored :wink:

I personally have experienced a gift of the Holy Spirit at a LifeTeen adoration event in St. Louis, and it was very unexpected and amazing.

Just keep the focus on the right place and you should be fine. We are given direction already on where our focus should be at.

Again, if it isn’t for you, do not go but do not discourage others as we may not know what their path is and where they may be on their own journey :slight_smile:

Good advice (and you have a great bishop, too! :)).

I haven’t had any direct experience with this, but it seems to be Protestant influence infiltrating the Church. Charismatic adoration sounds so irreverent that I was shocked when I heard about it.
Maybe it works for some people and there’s nothing wrong with it, but I’m going to stay as far away from it as I can.

Come to a meeting before putting down what the Church approves and encourages. Yes, there is vibrant singing and praise. There is exuberance. There are also periods of quiet meditation and listening. The prayer groups that I have attended also include teachings on what the charisms are and how to properly use them. Prophecy is always subject to discernment.
The prayer group that I have most recently attended focuses on intercessory prayer. It begins with praise and thanksgiving. Where have we seen God at work in our lives in the past week? What prayers have we seen answered? After that, we pray for the needs of the parish, the city, and the world. There is no irreverence.
The Charismatic Renewal does not stop with prayer groups. It involves interior change that can only be seen over time. It is very often members of the Charismatic Renewal who are the first to volunteer for the various parish ministries. You may not even know the person is charismatic until after you have known him/her for a period of time. Vocations have come out of the renewal as those who have experienced the Baptism of the Holy Spirit come to know God on a personal level, not simply as an intellectual precept learned in school.
Members of the Charismatic Renewal often attend daily Mass, pray the rosary, and in many other way strive to make God the center of their lives. Is this not what we are all called to, to place our trust in God and live for Him alone?

Yes, this is what we are called to.
Are you saying that I am not capable of this because I do not attend a charismatic community?

Thank you for the invitation, but no thank you.
If people are ‘speaking in tongues’, I have no interest in being there.

I guess if I write a book, I could call it “Catholic is enough”.


It is true that one manifestation of the Baptism of the Holy Spirits speaking in tongues. It is however not the only gift. I am sure that the apostles did not anticipate this gift. There was a time in my life when I never expected such a gift.

As a Catholic I often read or heard the stories of saints who saw the Virgin Mary or had Jesus speak to them. Is it something I ever expected to happen to me? Of course not. Did I wonder what it might be like? Most definitely. As mentioned by guanaphore, genuine charisms have always been a part of Catholicism. Saints have been known for healing with a mere touch. John Vianney could read the hearts of those who came to him for confession.

Does the fact that God has given me extraordinary graces mean that I am better, holier, more Catholic than anybody else? That is a statement that I would never make. Like a branch on the vine, without God, I can do nothing. With God all things are possible.

The OP asked if the Charismatic Renewal has the approval of the magisterium. The answer is a resounding yes.

I have shared the story of a nun that I heard. This Carmelite spent many hours in contemplation. Her response to the gift of tongues was “I don’t know why I need this gift, but if it is from you, Jesus, why would I refuse?” After she received the gift, what had taken hours now took minutes. She had more time to spend in the Lord’s presence with less time finding her way there.

i would like to attend but do not know where one of the Charismatic Churches are. :frowning:

I don’t know that there are “Charismatic” churches. There are Charismatic prayer groups, and sometimes Charismatic Masses (which is the same Mass we all go to, and everyone can attend), but the Charismatic Renewal is a movement within the Church, and not separate from it. Those who prefer this type of worship serve within their own parishes, and usually don’t go around telling others “I’m Charismatic”, (although some do), as least in my experience. If I go to some event that is Charismatic, I am often quite surprised at who shows up. I see them involved heavily in the parish, lectoring, in the choir, involved in evangelization, the soup kitchen, Bible Studies, catechists, etc. If someone claims to have the gifts of the Holy Spirit (any gifts) and are not using them to build up the Church, they need to take a look at themselves. Even if one is homebound in a wheelchair, there is always prayer to build up the Church.

Many Dioceses have a liason with the Charismatic Renewal, and you can check out their websites for prayer groups and Masses, or call the Diocese, or check out the Diocesan newspaper.

This is a key point. The Charismatic Renewal falls under the umbrella of the Catholic Church and is not separate from it. I too have been surprised when attending a charismatic event and the people there.
An event that I truly enjoy, that is not generally advertised as charismatic, is a FIRE rally. FIRE stands for Faith, Intercession, Repentance, and Evangelization. The last time I was able to attend a FIRE rally, the Mass was concelebrated by 2 bishops. Priests from parishes within both dioceses were available for the Sacrament of Reconciliation throughout the event.
When the love of God penetrates your heart, there is a natural desire to give back. Charismatics are often active in their parishes.

I will tell you that the renewal has brought me into a deeper relationship with Jesus, a much, much greater appreciation of the Eucharist and the mass, a deeper understanding of Scripture and a love for Mary and the Rosary.

That being said, it may not be everyone’s cup of tea. Try it with an open mind and a prayer to the Holy Spirit for discernment, and see where the Lord leads you.

It definitely has the approval of several Popes, including the current one, and I’m sure that the Holy See is well-versed in what the Charismatic Renewal does.

Just as with any church group – or the church in general – there are some who may overdo one aspect or another. When I was, uh, much younger, I remember the priests constantly reminding the people in the pews to pray along with the mass in their English-Latin missals – the mass was said in Latin at the time – because a good number of them prayed the rosary during the mass – a no-no and a misapplication of the rosary devotion. I’ve met many charismatic types who appear to be a little over-exhuberant. Don’t let that enthusiasm deter you. People ain’t perfect.

One anecdote to leave with you: The two priests who led our prayer group – they’ve since gone Home – attended their first charismatic meeting together and asked for prayers for themselves. Upon returning to the priory, one told the other, “I’m going to stop in my office. I want to check on a passage in one of the Bibles I have.” So, the priest went in and looked up the passage. He said that other different verses kept grabbing his attention, he would read them, pray over them, mark them with his highlighter. Then, another one would grab his attention, and then another and another. He had gone into his office before midnight and he kept at this until the cleaning lady interrupted him when she came in around 6am. Scripture has come alive for me in a similar way, though I haven’t stayed up all night!

Anyway, that’s my .02.

God bless you on your journey,

Thank you Danon. Many of the overexuberant have just experienced the Baptism of the Spirit. They are still on the mountain top. We know that Jesus told the disciples after the tranfiguration that they would need to return to the valley. We may be led into the desert as a part of our formation. This formation takes a lifetime. It is why there is such an emphasis on discernment within the Charismatic community.
As you have mentioned, the Sacraments and Scripture come alive. Prayer has taken a deeper meaning and priority in my own life with a greater awareness of who God is and what he expects of me.

What do you imagine is happening?

how is adoration different?

I myself go to a Charasmatic Group.I enjoy the singing the spritual talk given by the priest and the group sharing, but like all things spritual one must be careful and not get caught up in good feelings and emotions.

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