Letter from Archbishop Gervais of the Archdiocese of Ottawa

Hi, my name is Fr Bob Poole, and I am the director of Lift Jesus Higher, a Catholic charismatic community, based in Richmond, which is a suburb of Ottawa, in the province of Ontario, Canada.

Our statement of identity describes us as “A Catholic community growing in Spirit, Truth and Life.” This pretty much indicates our awareness that, after so many years of existence, we are still very far from the finished article! Our statement of mission also describes us as that “treasure in broken vessels” that Paul mentions in 2 Corinthians: 4-7, and when we contemplate our corporate and individual brokenness, we just have to marvel at God's faithfulness in keeping us going these so many years, despite many trials, struggles, false starts and wrong turnings.

Because God is so faithful, we believe that He will accomplish in us what He has purposed for us as a community. Our statement of mission says that we believe that God's call on us is:

“To lift Jesus higher in Ottawa and the nation. To see Ottawa and Canada transformed by the love of God in Jesus Christ through the revival power of the Holy Spirit.”

A lofty ideal indeed! But we know that this is not the work of one church group alone. And we are happy to be working alongside many other churches in the National Capital Region, under the auspices of Mission Ottawa/Outaouais, who are believing and praying and working for the fire of revival to sweep through the region, and out into the nation of Canada as a whole. There have been numerous prophetic words and visions about this in the last few years, and the eyes of many leading Christian visionaries have been turning to Canada, believing that the next big outpouring of Holy Spirit fire will fall on that nation. As the city of government, Ottawa obviously has a strategic importance in God's purposes for Canada.

At Lift Jesus Higher, we believe we have a small part to play in helping bring the fire of revival into the Roman Catholic Church in this country. Too often in the past, waves of revival across the world seem to have bypassed the Catholic Church, and it is the cry of our hearts that this not happen again!

Part of our vision statement sees us:

“Being called by God to work under Him and with others to participate in a new work of God for the new millennium. The essence of this call is the worship of the Father in spirit and in truth which transcends denomination and boundaries and shows forth the glory of the risen Lord...we seek to build bridges within our Catholic Communion and with other denominations to unify and heal Christ's Body on earth.”

The other part of our vision statement sees that God is making us into one of those families where He can bring His poor to dwell (cf Psalm 68:6) .We see ourselves called in the spirit of Isaiah 61:1-3 to reach out to the many broken and wounded people in the local community who most probably would hesitate to go anywhere near the normal parish church. So our vision says that:

“As treasure in broken vessels, we receive the lonely and broken and seek to bring all into the fullness of life God intended through a Christ-centered healing ministry.”

Our main times of gathering as a community are for our weekly charismatic Sunday Mass, which begins at 12:30 p.m., and our weekly Wednesday Praise and Worship Prayer Meeting at 7:30 p.m. In both services, we seek to flow in the full anointing of the Spirit, exercising gifts of worship, prophecy, teaching and healing ministry.

Besides these events, we have a weekly Bible Study meeting on Thursday afternoons at 3 p.m. Other ministries include bi-weekly cell groups.

“To prepare the Bride for the Bridegroom”

We are firmly convinced that we are not able, of ourselves, to do anything at all, but we are confident of this, that “He who began this good work in us will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” (Philippians 1: 6). Please join with us in praying that we will be faithful to the Lord's call on our lives here at Lift Jesus Higher.

Fr. Bob Poole