Brief History of the Charismatic Renewal Ministries in the Catholic Church.
It all started in 1967 among some Roman Catholic students in American University (Duquesne). These Students in prayer retreat were seeking and thirsty after the Holy Spirit. They were challenged by the more of the Holy Spirit among non-Roman Catholic Students in the same campus. In this prayer meeting, suddenly they were baptised in the Holy Spirit and they began to speak in tongues. From there other Catholics who came in contact with them had the same experience when they were prayed for by the laying on of hands.
By 1973, the movement was introduced in Nigeria by a Dominican Priest Rev. Father Richeal, a lecturer in the University of Ife (now Obafemi Awolowo University). It is from this group and similar ones in theDominican community at Ibadan and Lagos as well as some group in Owerri that the movement spread across the entire country. Today, it exists in virtually every Catholics parish and institution of higher learning.
Brief History of the Charismatic Renewal Ministries (CRM)
CRM is the work of God and it began in the heart of students who were members of “God is Love Community” a Catholic Charismatic Renewal Movement Group at the University of Ife (now Obafemi Awolowo University). On the prophetic level, God has been speaking to born again Roman Catholics in various ways and at different times and occasions of his intension to gather unto him a people of praise within the Catholic fold. This burden lead to the formation of a prayer cell in November 1979, which met every Saturday to pray and fast and fast for a new move of God among Roman Catholics. In answer to this Prayers God spoke on the 18th of Feb. 1980, a prophecy that soon became the Vision of CRM.
The Prophecy reads:
“Start preparing the people for the great harvest in the Catholic Church. The harvest is ripe at now, but the labourers are few, I don’t want men who are prepared but not faithful. I want men with faithful and obedient hearts. This is what I mean by you keeping my Church, feed my flock, you have to make them understand what it means it means to have authority. You are my Children, I the Lord of Host I have begotten thee. I am your Father, you are my Children. I have called you all for the Glory of my name. I want you to show the devil that you are my Children, my Own Children, the Children of the Most High God, Alpha and Omega, I am the Lord.
You have to love one another all of you, because love covered a multitude of sins. It is when you have love for another you will agree as one as the apostles did and then you shall do great and mighty things in my name. I want you all to prepare for the great battle. The devil knows and he is planning for you all. I want you all to learn to wait for me.I don’t mean going on a fast but waiting to hear me speak to you.
Ask me if you are not sure of what to do, i will explain to you. You are my Children, why do you fear to talk to me? Did I not make all things for the glory of my name? You had better learn to speak, you have to speak, you just have to talk, and then I will know you are really sincere.
Take not into account what the enemy may be planning to do, for I am greater than he, I will be with you always to perform what I want you to do for the glory of my name. My glory I never shall give to any other for I am the Lord.
My own dear Children, I will always lead you on. Listen to my voice for the sheep knows the voice of the master. Learn to know when I want to speak to you and listen, listen attentively for it is for your own good. I love you all. I guard over you all jealously for you are mine, my very own”.
These words of prophecy became the thrust of the National Catholic Charismatic Students, the first national expression of the work of the Ministry. Many other events took place in the mid-eighties that further substance to the vision as well as the need for the CRM to stand out distinctly with its unique Identity and mission.
Today, the work has blossomed in virtually every state of Nigeria outside Nigeria, CRM exist in five (5) other Countries such as Germany, Britain, S/A, Togo, gainsaid,Liberia, Tanzania, America, Cameron. CRM will reach anywhere Roman Catholics are found. The zeal of the Lord will do it.