Matteo Calisi, born in Bari (Italy) on 11th February 1958, is married to Giovanna De Pascalis and has two sons, Daniele and Francesco, aged respectively 23 and 16. Matteo studied Music at the Conservatoire and Theology and Bizantinology at the Ecumenical Faculty of Bari, his home town. He is a Music Professor at the State School.
The five main branches of Matteo’s Christian commitment are the Vatican, The Catholic Charismatic Renewal, the Ministry of Worship, the Ministry of Reconciliation and the Community of Jesus. These ministries lead him to minister in an international context. He has held conferences in more than fifty different countries of all continents. Matteo co-operates with different charismatic ecumenical and theological magazines in Italy and abroad. He also wrote three books – published in Italian – which deal with the themes of music, praise, worship, holiness and ecumenism.
In 2001, in the presence of Senators, Deputies, Ministers, Ambassadors and Bishops, Matteo held a Conference in the Parliament of the Italian Republic, in defence of the laws protecting the rights of the Family. He held also another conference at the Supreme Court of Cassation in Rome in the presence of Lawyers, Judges and Magistrates. In 2004 he was invited to speak about the Catholic Charismatic Renewal in the context of the new religious realities in a meeting held in Rome by ANCIS – Anthropology Forum International Cultural Centre, under the aegis of the Senate of the Italian Republic. Also in 2004, in Tirana, he met members of the Albanian Parliament and the President of the Parliament Committee for Human Rights. In February 2009 he participated in the 57th National Prayer Breakfast in the presence of the President of the United States Barack Obama, the Senators, the Members of the Congress and other Heads of State, Prime Ministers, Ambassadors and Christian leaders coming from more than 160 countries.
Since 1996 he has been collaborating with the Pontifical Council for the Laity in the ‘ad hoc group’ of the Ecclesial Movements and the New Communities. In November 2002 he was a Speaker at the XX Plenary Assembly of the Pontifical Council for the Laity giving a report on the theme “The Eucharist: source and apex of the lay faithful life”.
On 11th March 2008 His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI appointed him as a Member of the Pontifical Council for the Laity.
He has personally met the Supreme Pontiffs John Paul II and Benedict XVI on various occasions.
The Catholic Charismatic Renewal (CCR)
Matteo Calisi is an international leader of the Catholic Charismatic Renewal in the Catholic Church.
Since 2002 he has been the President of the Catholic Fraternity of Charismatic Covenant Communities and Fellowships (CFCCC) Organism of Pontifical Right, recognised by the Pontifical Council for the Laity of the Holy See at San Calisto Palace in Vatican.
Till March 2004, Matteo Calisi served as Vice-President and Representative for South Europe of the International Catholic Charismatic Renewal Services (ICCRS), which has its Head-Office in Vatican. Furthermore, he was delegated to represent ICCRS at the Vatican Dicastries and to preside ICCRS Sub-Committee for Ecumenism. He was also Member of ICCRS International Doctrinal Committee and Member of the Executive European Council of the Catholic Charismatic Renewal.
In November 2001 Matteo was a moderator at the First International Colloquium about “Healing Prayer and Charismatic Renewal in the Catholic Church” and co-presided over the Second International Colloquium on the “Charisms in the Church and in the Catholic Charismatic Renewal” held in Vatican by the Pontifical Council for the Laity in co-operation with ICCRS.
From 1976 to 1987, as a worship leader and Christian musician, Matteo led the National Service of Song of the Italian Charismatic Renewal. In 1987 he founded the National Service of Music and Song (SNMC), a Symphony Orchestra and a Choir made up of about 120 members, directed by himself until 1997. The SNMC served during many National and International conferences organised by the Catholic Charismatic Renewal (RnS and ICCRS) and during the Ecumenical Charismatic Conferences organised by ICCOWE, ECC and CCI. The SNMC was invited first by Pope John Paul II in 1990 (during the International Retreat of Priests organised by “Evangelisation 2000“) then in 1998 (at the Congress of Movements and New Communities, organised by the Pontifical Council for the Laity). This Ministry is inspired by “the Restoration of the Tabernacle of David” (Acts 15: 16).
During the latest twenty years, Matteo has composed and recorded much liturgical and charismatic music. In the past he was Artistic Director and Producer of Christian music for various publishers. He published International Worship Music and translated into Italian songs of Integrity Hosanna Music, Maranatha Music, Word Music, Thankyou Music, Servant Publication, etc… Matteo gave concerts for the Hosanna International Christian Artists Multifestival in USA, and led seminars and conferences for Worship leaders and Christian musicians. From 1995 to 1999 he was Co-ordinator of the International Consultation of the Artists of Catholic Music.
Ministry of Reconciliation
In 1992, together with the Pentecostal Pastor Rev. Dr. Giovanni Traettino (Bishop-Chairman of the Evangelical Church of the Reconciliation), Matteo founded Consultazione Carismatica Italiana (Italian Charismatic Consultation – CCI), a joint committee of Catholic Charismatics and Pentecostal Evangelicals, which started a dialogue between Catholics and Pentecostals in Italy. Presently Matteo is Co-President of CCI together with Rev. Traettino. CCI organised eight “Retreats for a Brotherly Dialogue” on theological issues. Among those who have collaborated with this process of dialogue and reconciliation there are some well known people such as Fr. Raniero Cantalamessa (Catholic, Vatican), Prof. Gary McGee (Assemblies of God, USA), Fr. Kilian McDonnell (Catholic, Vatican/USA), Prof. Vinson Synan (Holiness Pentecostal Church, USA), Prof. Walter Hollenweger (Reformed, Switzerland), Fr. Peter D. Hocken (Catholic, England), Prof. Stanley M. Burgess (Pentecostal, USA), Fr. James Puglisi (Catholic, Italy), H.E. Archbishop Giuseppe Chiaretti (Catholic, Italy), Fr. Ioan Sauca (Orthodox, Romania), Bishop Bernard Edward Underwood (Holiness Pentecostal Church, USA), Fr. Juan Usma Gomez (Catholic, Vatican), Sr. Nancy Kellar (Catholic, USA), Fr. Ken Metz (Catholic, USA), Fr. Jacques Philippe (Catholic, France) Rev. Ps. Jeorge Himitian (Pentecostal, Argentina), Rev. Prof. Paolo Ricca (Waldesian, Italy), Prof. Fulvio Ferrario (Waldesian, Italy), Rev. Prof. Giovanni Cereti (Catholic, Italy) and many others.
These meetings were about theological themes. The last one took place in Bari at “Saint Nicholas” Institute of Ecumenical Patristic-Byzantine Theology. The theme was “The Pentecostal/Charismatic Movement: a challenge for theology and for the churches” . There were more than two hundred people attending, among them scholars and representatives of the World Council of the Churches (Switzerland), the Orthodox Patriarchate of Rumania, the Pentecostal Church in USA, the Waldensian Faculty of Theology (Italy), the Theological Faculty in Bari (Italy), the Italian Evangelical Alliance, the Federation of the Evangelical Churches (Italy), the Pentecostal Churches Federation (Italy), the Catholic Fraternity of Charismatic Covenant Communities and Fellowships (CFCCC), the International Catholic Charismatic Renewal Services (Vatican City), Centro Pro-Unione (Italy), the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of the the Unity of the Christians and the Pontifical Council for the Laity (Holy See). Matteo Calisi and Giovanni Traettino described this event in their interview published in the book entitled “Aspettando la Pentecoste: il quarto Ecumenismo” (Waiting for Pentecost: the fourth Ecumenism), editor Prof. Massimo Introvigne. Edizioni Il Messaggero di Padova, 1996. The preface is by Archbishop Msgr. Giuseppe Casale and Prof. Paolo Ricca. “The New International Dictionary of Pentecostal and Charismatic Movements”, Zondervan 2002 by Stanley Burgess and Edward M. Van Der Mass, mentioned this singular dialogue between Catholics and Pentecostals in Italy (see pages 136-141, 509, 559).
On the international level Matteo’s ministry of reconciliation is intensive as he co-operates with many ecumenical organizations, being member of the:
- Society for Pentecostal Studies (SPS) in the USA
- Conversation between Roman Catholic and Non-denominational Christians, sponsored by Centro Pro-Unione in Rome.
- Towards Jerusalem Council II (TJCII) for the dialogue betweenMessianic Jews and Christians, in the USA
- International Charismatic Consultation(ICC) seated in United Kingdom
- Comunión Renovada de Evangélicos y Católicos en el Espíritu Santo (CRECES) in Argentina.
- Encontro de Cristãos na Busca de Unidade e Santidade (ENCRISTUS), Brazil
- United in Christ, USA.
Together with some Evangelical and Catholic Argentinean leaders, Matteo founded the Comuniòn Renovada entre Catòlicos y Evangelicos en el Espiritu Santo (CRECES). This was the first joint statement in the history of the dialogue between Catholics and Evangelicals in Argentina and obtained a great support by Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, Metropolitan Archbishop of Buenos Aires, Primate of the Catholic Church in Argentina and President of Bishops’ Conference of Argentina.
Moreover, Matteo was appointed as a Member of the Preparatory Committee of the 3rd European Ecumenical Assembly (3EEA) organised by CCEE (Council of European Bishops’ Conferences) and KEK (Conference of European Churches), held at Sibiu (Romania) in 2007.
On several occasions Matteo has been called to give lectures during conferences for pastors and leaders. As a Minister of Reconciliation, he has been often invited to both Catholic and Protestant Universities and Faculties all over the world such as the Theological Faculty “Christ for the Nations”, Dallas TX, (USA), Princeton University, NJ (USA), the Franciscan University, Steubenville, OH (USA), the Catholic Faculty of Theology in Liublijana (Slovenia), Buenos Aires Pontifical University (Argentina), the Waldensian Faculty of Theology in Rome (Italy), “Saint Nicholas” Institute of Ecumenical Patristic-Byzantine Theology in Bari of the Pontifical University St. Thomas Aquinas. He carried out his reconciliation ministry throughout the world (North Ireland, France, Germany, Poland, Holland, Switzerland, Slovenia, Czech Republic, Canada, USA, Mexico, Malaysia, Argentina, Brazil, etc…) in churches of different Christian denominations.
Matteo’s ministry has been widespread through Christian TV, Radios and Musical Productions, such as Trinity Broadcasting Network TBN, Irving-Dallas and 91.7 KVTT, Dallas TX (USA), Word and Spirit on the Promiseland Television Network (KTAQ) from the campus of Hillcrest Church in Dallas, TX (USA), Eternal World Television Network ETW (by Mother Angelica), Birmingham, AL (USA), Practical Christianity, Clearwater FL (USA), Vatican TV Centre (Vatican City), TV Canção Nova (Brazil), Vatican Radio (Vatican City) and Radio Maria (USA, Canada and Italy).
The value of Matteo’s ecumenical ministry has received official recognitions:
- In 1995 the Pontifical University St. Thomas Aquinas conferred Matteo with a Certificate of Merit for “his commitment and offering his services for the Unity of the Christians”.
- In 2001 Matteo was the main speaker at the Christian Conference in Princeton (NJ) in the USA. On that occasion a Committee of Christians of different denominations (Presbyterians, Baptists, Catholics, Charismatics, Pentecostals and Non-denominationals) gave him the International Fellowship Award for his commitment to the progress of the unity and reconciliation of Christians.
This Ministry of Reconciliation is based on the process of transformation and sanctification of the Church, the Bride of Christ. In this process every barrier, every stain and wrinkle of division among Christians should be eliminated to prepare the Bride for the wedding banquet of the Lamb (Revelation 19:7).
In 2001, together with some leaders of different churches in Dallas, TX (USA), Matteo founded an organization called United in Christ.
The Holy Spirit gave to Matteo Calisi a heart to build in Bari an International Centre for the Reconciliation of Christians. This will be a place where Christians from different churches, confessing Jesus as their only Lord and Messiah, will meet to worship and to proclaim God’s Word to the world. The aim of this Centre will also be that of training Christian leaders and missionaries committed to the evangelization and training Ambassadors of Reconciliation to send all over the world.
The Community of Jesus
Matteo is the President of Comunità di Gesù (Community of Jesus) in Bari, Italy, a Charismatic Covenant Community he founded in 1983 that has a special ecumenical sensitiveness and whose charisma irradiates also other countries such as Albania, Argentina, Romania, Belarus, Angola, Brazil, Mexico and USA. Comunità di Gesù is located in different towns in Italy and abroad. In 1992 the Community was canonically recognised as a juridical personality by Ecclesiastical Authority in the Catholic Church and since 1994 it has become member of the Catholic Fraternity of Charismatic Covenant Communities and Fellowships (CFCCCF) of Pontifical Right.
The Community of Jesus is the covering association of the worldwide branches.
The Communities of Jesus is
- Trans-denominational: Members are accepted from all Christian faith traditions.
- International: member communities are located around the world.
- Christ Centered: member communities recognize that a personal relationship with Christ is the foundation of the Christian life.
- Spirit Filled: member communities encourage the free flow of the gifts of the spirit in worship, prayer and daily living.
- Evangelistic: member communities seek to reach out to those who do not know Christ.
- Ambassadors of Reconciliation: member communities seek and model reconciliation between Christian denominations, desiring for all Christians to be united in Christ.
Inspired by the Salvivic mission entrusted to the Church by our Lord, the vision of the Community of Jesus is to establish, support and mobilize the Christians worldwide, for the purpose of world Mission and discipleship.
To encourage and support all those related to the Community to come to know and follow Jesus, as Lord and Saviour of all men, and embrace holy living and a life of Witness.
The objectives ofthe Community of Jesus are:
- to share, encourage and consolidate the fruit of Christian living, in the power of the Holy Spirit, through the various expressions of communities and fellowships;
- to encourage and bring to Universal level the partnerships amongst the many leaders of the world movements within the church to be able to particularly engage the youth and support unprecedented “Ad Gentes” missions opportunities;
- to offer sound and dynamic innovative formation programs to emerging leaders to be able to foster and cultivate the Culture of Life;
- to raise new leaders, and men – and women of God, for and in the Kingdom;
- to organise and facilitate reconciliation events and dialogues between Christians, to build bridges and create an atmosphere for deeper understanding between Christian brothers through fostering of friendships, events and other informal meetings;
- to coordinate and enter with strategic partnerships with organizations who are using contemporary tools, such as media, internet, music, for an unprecedented, coordinated effort of world Evangelization and discipleship;
- to network with Christian leaders worldwide for the Great Commission to be accomplished.
The Community of Jesus in Bari, organises the yearly “ Kairòs: International Meeting for the Peace to the Nations ” (in 2000 for peace in the Balkans, in 2001 for peace in Jerusalem, in 2002 for peace in Europe, in 2003 on the theme “Christian Testimony and New Martyrs in Europe in the 20th Century”, in an ecumenical perspective, in 2005 on the theme “The Light coming from the East”, in 2006 the theme was “Fire on the Earth” and in 2009 the theme was “Father make them one so that the world may believe”), with speakers (Bishops, Cardinals, Rabbis, Pastors, etc.) from all over the world and from different denominations: Catholics, Protestants, Anglicans, Orthodoxes, Pentecostals, Non-denominationals and Messianic Jews. Among the speakers: H.E. Vatolomeu Valeriu ANDRONI (Rumania) – Fr. Daniel ANGE (France) – H.E. Hon. Pjetër ARBNORI – H.Eminence Cardinal Francis ARINZE (Vatican City) – Fr. Pierre AGUILA (France) – Sr. AMADEI (Finland) – H.E. Bishop Kamal Hanna BATHISH (Israel) – Sr. Ancilla BERETTA (Italy) – Dr. Claudio BETTI (Italy) – Dr. Gianluigi BEVEGNI (Turkey) – H.E. Bishop Giancarlo Maria BREGANTINI (Italy) – Rev. Prof. Nicola BUX (Italy) – H.E. Archbishop Francesco CACUCCI (Italy) – Fr. Stefano CAPRIO (Russia) – Prof. Guzmàn CARRIQUIRY (Vatican City) – H.E. Archbishop Giuseppe CHIARETTI (Italy) – Rev. Tilo and Rosemarie CLAUSSEN (Sweden) – Fr. Carlo COLONNA s.j. (Italy) – H.Em. Cardinal Paul Josef CORDES (Vatican City) – Fr. Amedeo CRISTA (Kosova) – His Beatitude Cardinal Moussa Ignace DAOUD I (Vatican City) – H.E. Bishop Bronislaw DEMBOWSKI (Poland) – Rev. Peter DIPPL (Germany) – Fr. Mihai DRIGA (Rumania) – Dr. Francesco FERRARI (Italy) – Fr. Lucio GATTI (Italy) – H.E.Archimandrite Mgr. Siarghej GAJEK – Rev. Prof. Libero GEROSA (Switzerland) – Rev. Mons. Aldo GIORDANO (Switzerland) – Fr. Michael HARPER (United Kingdom) – Dr. Marcel HILA (Albania) – Rev. Mons. Peter HOCKEN (United Kingdom/Austria) – Rev. Martin IBARRA Y PEREZ (Spain) – Fr. Vito INCAMPO (Italy) – Mrs. Sondra JONES (USA) – Ms. Kim KOLLINS (Germany) – H.E. Archbishop Tadeusz KONDRUSIEWICZ (Russia) – Kurt LANGRSTAAT (USA) – H.E. Hon. Vito LATTANZIO (Italy) – Rev. Martin LOMBARDO (USA) – H.E. Archbishop Angelo MASSAFRA (Albania) – Fr. Salvatore MANNA (Italy) – Dr. Valeria MARTANO (Italy) – Martin NYSTROM (USA) – Dr. Dachan Mohamed NOUR (Syria) – H.G. Gerard O’FLAHERTY (England) – Mr. Aleksandr OGLORODNIKOV (Russia) – Rev. Stephen OLFORD (USA) – H.E. Bishop Mario PACIELLO (Italy) – Fr. Aleksander PETANI (Albania) – H.E. Archbishop Giovannni Battista PICHIERRI (Italy) – Wladimir PIKMAN (Ukraine) – Fr. Gerry REYNOLDS (Northern Ireland) – Prof. Adriano ROCCUCCI (Italy) – Fr. Angelo ROMITA (Italy) – Rev. Elsa-Ulrike ROSS (Germany) – H.E. Archbishop Cosmo Francesco RUPPI (Italy) – H.Em. Cardinal Stanislaw RYLKO (Vatican City) – H.E. Giovanni SCARABELLI- H.E. Mark SOPI (Kosova) – H.E. SILUAN (Rumania)- Rev. Gaetano SOTTILE (Italy) – Fr Romano SCALFI – H.E. Cardinal James Francis STAFFORD (Vatican City) – Fr. Segundo TEJADA (Albania) – H.E. TEODOSIE (Rumania) Rev. Giovanni TRAETTINO (Italy) – Fr. Petr ZIVNY (Czech Republic) – Prof. Alessandro ZUCCARI (Italy), H.G. Sean LARKIN (United Kingdom), H.E. Alan FONSECA (USA), prof. Rosario SCOGNAMILLO, o.p. (Italy). H.E. Domenico Padovano (Italy), H.E Virgil BERCEA, (Rumania), Julia Torres (Argentina), Rev. Dott. Piotr SMOLINSKI, m.i.c. Poland), H.G. Anthony Palmer (United Kimgdom), Rabbi Peter HIRSH (USA).
In May 2004, Matteo and the Bishop Mario Paciello, led a delegation of the Community of Jesus in Bucharest where they were received by His Beatitude Teoctist, Patriarch of the Orthodox Church of Rumania. In May 2004 Matteo led also a delegation of the Community of Jesus to pay a visit to Metropolite Anastasios, Archbishop of the Orthodox Church of Albania. One year later, together with Bishop Domenico Padovano, Matteo and a delegation of the Community of Jesus were received again by His Beatitude Teoctist, Patriarch of the Orthodox Church of Rumania.
Every year the Community of Jesus organises also an International and Interdenominational Praise Worship Conference. Leaders such as Kenneth and Gloria Copeland, Paul Wilbur, Mike Bickle, Don Moen, Martin Nystrom, Michael Coleman (Integrity Music) Mike Herron, Tommy Tenney, Tom Inglis, Dott. Eric Belcher, Pat and Ron Allen, Livie and Anthony Sanchez, Palemon Camu, Shelley Elizabeth Hundley, Jill Austin were the main speakers of the latest Conferences.
Since 2003 Community of Jesus has started in Bari an International Dialogue Catholics – Messianic Jews. Benjamin Berger (Jerusalem, Israel), Shmuel Suran (Jerusalem, Israel), Paul Wilbur (USA), Peter Hirsh (USA), Geoffrey Choen (South Africa/USA), Vladimir Pikman (Germany), Julia Blum (Jerusalem, Israel), Jorge e Marcella Levi Goldstein (Argentina), Duo Davka (Italy) Fr. Peter D. Hocken (Vienna, Austria) and Fr. Jacques Philippe (Toulouse, France), Fr Moïse Ballard (France) and Shelley Elizabeth Hundley (USA) were the speakers and worship leaders during these yearly meetings organised by Community of Jesus.
Goals by 2015
- To have 100 branches of the Community networking together for the objectives to be reached.
- To have strategic partnerships being established with the largest and the most influential Christian organizations, institutions, in the world.
- To create an unprecedented open climate for reconciliation between all churches through informal events and meetings;
- To have no less than 100 full time lay missionaries mobilized through covenant communities and fellowships for world mission, Ad Gentes;
- To establish in collaboration with other Spirit filled networks a first international Centre for Reconciliation, Leadership and Mission;
- To establish a worldwide network of “Ambassadors of Reconciliation Training centres”.
- To have an annual international conference in Bari;
- To sponsor International regional conferences to be held every 3 years in Asia, Europe, Latin America, Oceania, Africa and North America;
- To organise every year a meeting for dialogue and reconciliation between Christians.
Prof. Matteo CALISI
Stradella Cannaruto, 1/3 – 70124 BARI, Italy (Europe)
Tel. (+39) 080-50-26103 – Fax (+39) 080-50-26-102