Moderator to visit Rome
Published on 1 November 2023 3 minutes read
The Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland will today arrive in Italy to spend six days meeting with ecumenical and mission partners, attending special services and events and learning more about their work.
Rt Rev Sally Foster-Fulton said she was looking forward to visiting Rome where she will witness the introduction of Rev Tara Curlewis as the new minister of St Andrew's Church of Scotland and will also serve as the Reformed Ecumenical Officer for the World Communion of Reformed Churches (WCRC).
She has been appointed to strengthen the presence of the Reformed Churches and their relationships with the Vatican and other ecumenical bodies in Rome, and provide spiritual leadership to the Kirk's congregation in the Italian capital.
The Moderator said: "I am particularly looking forward to the introduction of Rev Tara Curlewis at St Andrew's Church of Scotland.
"She will be playing an important ecumenical role in addition to her parish duties.
"Whilst in Rome it will be a privilege to meet the staff at Mediterranean Hope and hear about the incredible work they do supporting the welfare of refugees and migrants in Italy.
"The visit will strengthen ecumenical ties across Christian denominations at a time when working together for peace is so important."
Tomorrow, Mrs Foster-Fulton will begin the day by meeting with the president of the Federation of Protestant Churches in Italy, Rev Prof Daniele Garrone, and executive secretary Rev Luca Baratto.
She will then meet with staff from Mediterranean Hope, a refugee and migrant programme of the Federation of Protestant Churches in Italy and take part in a conversation about the programme's work.
Also attending will be Fiona Kendall, the Church of Scotland's Mission Partner who works with Mediterranean Hope in Rome.
In the afternoon, Mrs Foster-Fulton will meet with Mirella Manocchio, president of the Federation of Protestant Women before joining Don Marco Gnaviparish priest at Santa Maria in Trastevere for evening prayers with the Community of Sant'Egidio.
On Friday, the Moderator will visit the Joel Nafuma Refugee Center which offers services to refugees and asylum seekers in St. Paul's Within the Walls Episcopal Church.
Later that day, Mrs Foster-Fulton will visit the Pontifical Scots College in Rome, currently based in the Pontifical Beda College, at the invitation of Fr Mark Cassidy, the rector.
On Saturday, the Moderator will visit the Apostolic Palace and tour Vatican City, an independent state in the heart of Rome which is the headquarters of the Catholic Church.
In the evening, she will take a walking tour of Rome's non-conformist Christian history with Rev Professor Daniele Garrone, an Italian Protestant theologian.
On Sunday, the Moderator will preach at St Andrew's Church of Scotland during morning worship, which will be led by the Rev Joanne Evans-Boiten, Moderator of the Presbytery of International Charges.
Rev Tara Curlewis will be introduced as minister of the congregation and in the evening will be introduced as the reformed ecumenical liaison officer at the Waldensian Church at Piazza Cavour.
Rev Najla Kassab, president of the World Communion of Reformed Churches and a pastor in the Church of Scotland's partner church in Syria and Lebanon, the National Evangelical Synod, will preach at the evening service if she is able to fly out of Lebanon.
Deacon Alessandra Trotta, the Moderator of the governing council of the Waldensian Evangelical Church will also take part.
On Monday, the Moderator will join in discussions with members of the Waldensian Evangelical Church, which in 2024 will mark 850 years of witness and its inception by a wealthy merchant called Waldo to serve the poor. That evening she will participate in a seminar at the Waldensian Faculty of Theology before having dinner with the British ambassador to the Holy See, Chris Trott, in the Ambassador's Residence.
On Tuesday, the Moderator will visit the Churches Commission for Migrants in Europe which is having its annual Meeting in Rome, and will also attend the weekly lunchtime service in the Anglican Centre in Rome before departing Italy.