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RECAP: Fire & Fusion Conference

I was fortunate to be able to attend a good portion of this conference hosted by Lift Jesus Higher Catholic Community in Ottawa. It was a wonderful Holy Spirit filled gathering of Evangelicals, Catholics, Pentecostals and Protestants, laughing and especially praying over each other as well as the conference attendees.


Keynote speakers included John Arnott & Bruno Ierullo of Catch the Fire, Stacey Campbell, Revival Now, Matteo Calisi, United in Christ & President of the Community of Jesus in Bari, Italy and Fathers Ed Wade & Francis Donnelly, Companions of the Cross.

Bishop Tony Palmer with the Communion of Evangelical Episcopal churches in the UK was scheduled to speak but was tragically killed in an accident on July 20 this year. A video tribute to Bishop Palmer’s life was presented at the conference.

Other church leaders represented were Archbishop Terrence Prendergast & Bishop Christian Reisbeck of the Ottawa Catholic Archdiocese, Pastor Mark Redner, the Oasis in Kinburn, Jonathan Hutchison, Peace Tower Church, Ottawa, Bill Prankard, Bill Prankard Evangelistic Association, Steven Long, Catch the Fire, Richard Long, Love Ottawa, and Fr. Bob Poole


Fire & Fusion Conference on Unity and Revival Ottawa August 28 to 31, 2014

Here are some highlights I gleaned from the presentations:

Connections began forming 15 or more years ago between Bishop Tony Palmer of the UK and Pope Francis when he was Bishop in Argentina and Matteo Calisi in Italy with representatives of Catch the Fire in Toronto (formerly the Toronto Airport Christian Fellowship), and the Companions of the Cross in Ottawa towards a common vision of unity among the Christian churches. Bishop Tony Palmer brought Pope Francis' message of unity to the Kenneth Copeland gathering of church leaders in January this year followed by Pope Francis holding a private meeting with a group of Evangelicals at the Vatican on June 27. In attendance were Bishop Tony Palmer, Kenneth Copeland (host of Believer’s Voice of Victory), John & Carol Arnott, James & Betty Robison (hosts of Life Today TV program) and Rev. Geoff Tunnicliffe and other representatives of the World Evangelical Alliance. Another event in July this year was Pope Francis' visit and apology to a Pentecostal Church in Italy for past persecution by Roman Catholics.

John Arnott (

  • Pope Francis spoke at the meeting in June of unity with "reconciled diversity", not based on doctrine but on the Father's love, and gave the Evangelical leaders a mission to intentionally work towards unity.
  • There is a choice to either stand and watch the Holy Spirit at work or do something (be proactive).
  • This should not be a superficial unity but like the oneness that Jesus asked in his prayer in John 17:20 to the Father for all future generations to have the oneness that He has with the Father.
  • We need to build each other up - put an emphasis on “comfort” when talking of the second coming of Jesus; a reference to the comfort given by the Good News of the Gospel (1 Thes. 4:14-18)
  • Believes the Holy Spirit is preparing the bride (church) for Jesus’ return by building a group of believers who are intimately in love with Jesus
  • Believes we may be in the time frame of Jesus’ second coming (although no one except the Father knows the timing) but we need to be proactive for unity; unity is the key. Jesus won’t want to return for a “squabbling” bride. And, whenever He comes, whether in 50 years or much more than that or sooner, we won’t regret having prepared. So take time to buy the oil of intimacy with Jesus. Have your identity as a lover of Jesus.

Stacey Campbell (

  • "Oneness" is the nature of God and is the most powerful revival and is achieved through God's "glory" which is mercy, compassion, grace, slowness to anger, rich in steadfast love and truth (from Exodus 34:5-6)
  • Need to know the "heart of God" not just know the words of Scripture.
  • We can transform the city, the nation when we manifest this "glory"; we look like Jesus.
  • This happened in Jerusalem 2000 years ago when those who were hardened of heart were transformed (they saw the church in one accord)

Matteo Calisi (

  • When Pope Francis met Evangelicals in June it was seen by many in Italy as a scandal
  • Pope Francis' response was that the real scandal is the "division" of the church and ignoring that division
  • We have more in common than we have differences; it's church division that kept many from believing the Good News of the Gospel
  • Diversity is not division but an exchange of gifts from one to the other; Evangelicals to Catholics; Catholics to Evangelicals, & other denominations.
  • A radical change of mindset occurred in the Roman Catholic Church since the last Vatican Council in 1963-65 when the RC Church recognized Christ as head of the whole church, not just the Catholic Church
  • we need an exchange of gifts and a recognition of Christ as Lord of the whole church.
  • we need to understand each other & realize that division is a sin; different doctrines don't stop us from loving each other
  • must get rid of bitterness and get our hearts right

Bruno Ierullo (

  • Pope Francis used the term "ecumenism of blood" - martyrs are martyred regardless of denomination, not because they are Catholics, or Pentecostals, or Orthodox etc. but because they are Christian
  • God the Father wants Christian unity to give a gift to His Son - to restore His bride (the church) in answer to Jesus' prayer in John 17:20 because Jesus is coming back for His beautiful bride.
  • we are each on a parallel journey towards Jesus, as we get closer to Jesus we get closer together (with reconciled diversity)
  • In unity we are more like Jesus is with the Father & the Holy Spirit (the Trinity)
  • we want the world to know us by our love for one another (John 13:34)
  • therefore we need to be “ambassadors of reconciliation”

Archbishop Prendergast & Bishop Reisbeck:

  • As baptized Christians it is our duty to work for unity
  • The Holy Spirit creates freedom
  • Prayer needed for all church leaders to grow in leadership

Fr. Ed Wade:

  • Gave a compelling personal testimony of the power of the Holy Spirit in his own life. He spoke of how his life was radically changed from a former marine to a Catholic priest working in Northern Ireland during the conflict between Protestants and Catholics. This was something he had never planned of his own accord but demonstrates the need for us to abandon ourselves to Divine Providence. We need to find Christ in the darkness by faith and total trust in God.

Fr. Francis Donnelly spoke of the need to:

  • realize it’s all about the Holy Spirit who is the love of the Father and the Son, the manifestation of Jesus
  • soak in the oil of the Holy Spirit by being in the Word, in prayer and by gathering with other believers
  • be united with other believers in love, respect, honor, see each other as the Body of Christ
  • offer a deep and genuine friendship and be open to the dwelling of the Holy Spirit in other believers
  • renew the church; shake off lukewarmness for a new release of the Pentecost
  • the whole church must become the home and school of “communion”, i.e. unity in Christ
  • see one another as a gift to each other, encourage it, call it forth, be fearlessly opne to the worship of the Holy Spirit
  • see that there is room for diversities, they are not an offence to God, allow the Lord to bring us into a communion with different forms of expression in different people

    Click here for conference photos. 
    Click here for recordings of the speakers at the conference. 

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