Life in the Spirit (LIS) Today

Life in the Spirit (LIS) seminars are an effective way to introduce Catholics to a deeper relationship with the Holy Spirit and Jesus. In addition, it lays the foundation to learn about our mission to take care of God’s people and build up His Church.

About LIS Seminars

Purpose of LIS Seminars

The Doctrinal Commission of the International Catholic Charismatic Renewal Services (ICCRS) offered this response in 2013.

“Look to the future by committing yourselves to a new evangelisation, new in ardour, method, and expression.” With these words Pope John Paul II gave the Church its primary task for the third millennium: a new proclamation of the gospel carried out with renewed vigour inspired by the Holy Spirit, the power who creates witnesses (Acts 1:8).

The Life in the Spirit Seminar is an ideal tool for the New Evangelisation. When it is done well, one can find in it the three characteristics mentioned by Pope John Paul II

New in Ardour

Zeal and fervor come from the Holy Spirit. Only baptism “in the Holy Spirit and fire,” lived in a context of deep and permanent conversion, enables a person to act in the anointing of the Holy Spirit to evangelize and to serve the body of Christ. The Holy Spirit gives us the courage to proclaim Christ to those who do not know him, just as the Samaritan woman, given the living water to drink, became a zealous evangelist (Jn 4:39–49).

Today, people listen to witnesses whom Jesus’ unlimited love compels. People hear and believe the ardent evangelist because he has met the Lord, who has attracted him, called him, healed him, and sent him to bear fruit. His heart is inflamed with love like those of the disciples of Emmaus when they heard the word of God.

New in Method

Christians who become syncretistic or lukewarm generally have not been evangelised. They have not had as yet a personal encounter with Jesus the Messiah, the crucified and resurrected Saviour. The first step in the new method of evangelisation is therefore the presentation of the risen Jesus. The Life in the Spirit Seminar proclaims Jesus by experiential testimony, speaking openly of his name, his teaching, his life, his promises, and his kingdom. It proclaims the kerygma: “God the Father loves you personally. Jesus is your Saviour and Lord.”

The second step is the communal sharing in Jesus’ mission. Jesus sends workers into his vineyard to work as a team, using the gifts and charisms of the Spirit. The unity established by the word of God gives us credibility and plants the seed of fruitful action. When the apostles Peter, Andrew, James and John worked together, they filled their boats with fish (Lk 5:1-11).

New in Expression

The new evangelization is new in expression if the evangelist proclaims the gospel in clear and direct terms, if he pays attention to the signs that accompany the proclamation of the word, and if he, driven by a deep faith, speaks under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.

Through baptism in the Holy Spirit, we learn to imitate Jesus, who “went about all Galilee, teaching… preaching the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every infirmity among the people” (Mt 4:23), and who sent his disciples to do the same (Mk 16:15–17). The proclamation of the kingdom is not only in words but also in deeds, done through faith in Jesus’ name and the power of the Holy Spirit.


The new evangelisation calls us to return to the teaching of Jesus and the powerful action of the Holy Spirit. It therefore calls for a return to basics. The Life in the Spirit Seminar proposes an approach to meeting the living Jesus and experiencing the power of the Holy Spirit. It is truly a royal path of entry into the abundant life (Jn 10:10).
Catholic Charismatic Renewal International Service (CHARIS)

Address by Pope Francis

Here is an excerpt from the speech given by Pope Francis to the participants at the International Conference of leaders of the Catholic Charismatic Renewal Service — CHARIS.

One goal that you are proposing, and which I myself have encouraged, is to expand the “Life in the Spirit Seminars” in all places and for everyone. These are truly kerygmatic moments, opportunities for the “initial proclamation” of the Gospel. They make it possible for people to encounter the living Jesus, in his word and his Spirit, and at the same time to experience his Church as a welcoming environment, a place of grace, reconciliation and rebirth. That is why I have encouraged you to make these Seminars more widely available. Today I would ask you: are the Life in the Spirit Seminars being offered in a variety of ecclesial contexts, in small and more remote places, and among the poor and on the peripheries? Each of you can answer this in your hearts. One obstacle to this might be the idea that these Seminars can only be held in large venues and with well-known leaders, whereas in reality even small parish groups and local leaders can organize them and present them to people in their area.

The Life in the Spirit Seminars are often an engaging and transformative experience that becomes a turning point in people’s lives. A turning point: after a Seminar, people change course! Nonetheless, they are only a beginning, like a fire that burns very intensely but risks dying out unless it is continually fed. Precisely for this reason, the Seminars need to be followed up by suitable methods of continuing formation that can fan into flame the graces received and encourage ongoing growth in faith and prayer, the moral and sacramental life, the practice of charity and cooperation in the Church’s mission.
Address by Pope Francis to CHARIS

Goals of a LIS Seminar

The goals of the Life in the Spirit Seminars is very limited. They are designed to help people find a new and fuller and better life as Christians by laying or strengthening the foundation of a truly Christian life.

“No other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.”
1 Corinthians 3: 11

The seminars, then, are concerned with the most basic part of Christian life: establishing a person in Christ.  To accomplish that goal, there are four things the Life in the Spirit Seminars try to do.

  1. To help those who come to the seminars establish or re-establish or deepen a personal relationship with Christ;
  2. To help those who come to the seminars to yield to the action of the Holy Spirit in their lives so that they can begin to experience his presence and can begin to experience him working in them and through them;
  3. To help those who come to the seminars be joined to Christ more fully becoming part of a community or a group of Christians with whom they can share their Christian life and from whom they can receive support in that life;
  4. To help them begin to make use of effective means of growth in their relationship with Christ.

Catholic Charismatic Renewal- Archdiocese of Miami

Life the Spirit Seminars

Life in the Spirit Seminars

The Life in the Spirit Seminar was originally designed to be a seven-week program, modelled on the seven weeks of prayer and expectancy that Jesus’ disciples, including his mother Mary, lived from the Resurrection until Pentecost. On the fiftieth day, “they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance” (Acts 2:4).

Today, the Life in the Seminar is sometimes done in a two-week format, or over a weekend, or even in a single day. For some groups, these are the only feasible options due to various pastoral circumstances. However, they are less than ideal. Whenever possible, it is best to use the full seven-week format. In some cases, where people are unfamiliar with the gospel message, a longer format such as three months or a year is even better.

The Seminar is not only a matter of listening to talks, but of following a path of deep conversion, breaking with a life of sin, obtaining inner healing and liberation. People discover anew the Father’s love, come to know Jesus’ salvation and lordship, and are equipped to become his disciples and witnesses in the world. It is only after this formation and conversion that people are ready to receive a deeper outpouring of the Spirit and his gifts.

If there is insufficient preparation, the prayer for baptism in the Spirit will usually not bear the expected fruit of holiness, nor will it bring authentic charisms to serve the body of Christ in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Of course, God sometimes sovereignly baptises people in the Holy Spirit apart from the Life in the Spirit Seminar, for example through the sacrament of Confirmation if its preparation stresses the same themes as the Seminars. God pours out his Spirit when he wills.
Charismatic Renewal International Service (CHARIS),

The Archdiocese of Miami website provides additional information on the major topics addressed in an LIS seminar.

The seminars are a series of talks and discussions which take place over a period of seven weeks.  In the fifth week of the seminar, there is an opportunity for people to be prayed with to be baptized in the Holy Spirit.  The four weeks before that time are devoted to an explanation of the basic Christian message of salvation and of what it means to be baptized in the Spirit.  During the final two weeks, the teaching is oriented towards further growth in the life of the spirit.

But more than a series of courses or lectures, the Life in the Spirit Seminars are a chance for Christians who have found a fuller life in the Holy Spirit to come together with people who want to know more about that life, to share with them, and to help them take the firs steps of a new life themselves.  For this reason, the team that presents the seminars is one of their more important elements.  To provide the right kind of contact for the people taking the seminars, there should be one team member for every three or four new people.
Catholic Charismatic Renewal – Archdiocese of Miami

Local LIS Seminars

LIS seminars are organized and conducted by local prayer groups at various times throughout the year. These seminars will be highlighted as a Featured Event on the “Home” page. They will also be shown on the “Events” page.