The Charismatic Renewal movement was reported to be outgrowing its own name when 2,000 people attended an international ecumenical conference on charismatic renewal at Westminister's Methodist Central Hall.
The conference was sponsored jointly by the Fountain Trust, a London-headquartered organization established in 1964 with the prime aim of "the renewal of spiritual life of the full benefits of the charismatic renewal, and the Catholic Committee for Charismatic Renewal.
The theme of the conference was "growing in the Church." Speakers included Leo Cardinal Suenens, Archbishop of Malines-Brussels, who recently had attended a similar conference at Kansas City. At a press conference during the main session, he agreed there were major differences between Roman Catholics and Protestants but wounds, he said, while they couse suffering, are not to be hidden away, but kept open so that they might eventually be healed.
The main speaker at the press conference was the Rev. Tom Small, director of the Fountain Trust, who said, "In many ways we have outgrown the word 'charismatic,' if you mean by it an emphasis on two or three special gifts; now we are on to aspects of renewal-mission, holiness, unity, social concern, but all only through the power and ennobling of the Holy Spirit."
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Small said, "The Holy Spirit chasm of 400 years since the Remormation, but there remains a lot of talking to be done on that bridge."
Small told the press that he believed the last two years had seen the charismatic renewal growing up, maturing, recovering from the "inevitable triumphalism of early days."
He said he was convinced of the widespread impact of the charismatic renewal, although he admitted there were few churches whose whole corporate life had been affected by it.