News Release

Archbishop Speich Meets with Latter-day Saint Leaders  

His Excellency Archbishop Jean Marie Speich, Apostolic Nuncio (an ecclesiastical diplomat representing the Holy See) in Ghana met with leaders of the Africa West Area of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on May 17, 2016, including the Area President, Elder LeGrand R. Curtis, Jr. 

Meeting in the Africa West Area administrative offices, both leaders found they have much in common, including a lifetime of commitment to their respective faiths and a desire to promote the teachings of Jesus Christ.

 “We are very pleased that His Excellency, Archbishop Jean Marie Speich, the Apostolic Nuncio from the Holy See to Ghana, accepted our invitation to visit the Africa West Area Office and Accra Ghana Temple Site,” said Elder Curtis.   “We share a brotherhood in Christ and meet as friends,” commented Archbishop Speich. Elder Curtis noted, “Our meeting is an opportunity to build bridges of understanding.”

They talked on subjects of common interest such as strengthening the family, helping the less fortunate and the blessings of Christian service.  The Archbishop was particularly interested in the good that comes from LDS young single adults’ missionary service.  He was very interested in the benefit that comes to the young people from such service.  He also spoke of his efforts as a young parish priest to take the message of Christ to the people in their homes – not just wait for them to come to the church building.

Archbishop Speich was accompanied by Monsignor Renato Kucic, Second Secretary and Deputy of Mission.  Other Latter-day Saint leaders who joined in the discussions were Elder Daniel Yirenya-Tawiah and Elder John Koranteng, both Area Seventies (an Area Seventy is a local ecclesiastical leader assigned to supervise other Church leaders in specific geographic regions).

When describing the meeting between Elder Curtis and Archbishop Speich, Elder John Koranteng said, “I saw two powerful ambassadors of the Savior sharing their personal convictions and testimonies of the Savior’s work for mankind.”

Catholic and Latter-day Saint doctrines share a number of similarities regarding marriage and the family and the complementary roles of mother and father in bearing and raising children.  Protecting the rights of churches and individuals to discuss and promote these beliefs in a world where such values are vocally and even legally challenged is a cause that unites both faiths. 

Both Archbishop Speich and Elder Curtis agreed to continue their friendship through continued association in the future.

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