Father Michael Harper Foundation
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The Birth of SOMA
SOMA arose out of a Pre-Lambeth
Conference in 1978. Lambeth
Conferences are held every ten years for
the whole Anglican Communion
world-wide, in Canterbury. This was a
Eucharist in the Cathedral.
‘Soma’ means to ‘read’ in Swahili, ‘life
force’ in Sanskrit, and also it can
mean a word of greeting in the South
Praise before an address at Canterbury
Right to left: David Watson, a prominent
evangelist who suffered greatly for his ministry
and Cecil Kerr, ministry of Reconciliation in
Ireland, Michael Harper, and Terry Fulham,
international Bible teacher.
Archbishop Donald and Mrs Coggan at Canterbury
Group photo at the 1978 Canterbury pre-Lambeth
The Archbishop Donald Coggan and Jean, his wife,
supported the SOMA vision.
The Rev Barry Kissel and Michael in India
Barry joined Michael for one of the many visits to
India over a period of 18 years.
'Every child of God has the right to look his
Heavenly Father in the face.'
The most obvious attraction of the Renewal was the
joy which was so evident.
Meeting in Seoul, South.Korea
22,000 at one of 7 regular Sunday services in
Yongghi Cho’s church. At the sound of a bell, all
would shout their prayers together. ‘How confusing!’
said someone. ‘To whom?’ was the response!
Speakers at a SOMA Conference in Tanzania
Right to left: Michael, Bishop in Tanzania, and
Bishop Gresford Chitemo, through whom many
miracles regularly occurred, including leprosy
Michael and Bishop Bairagi of North India
Michael always gave love to all, but especially
bishops – which drew out their leadership
qualities to the great blessing of the churches.
The Archbishop of Kenya, with SOMA national
SOMA national directors of Canada and the USA with
Archbishop Manasses Kuria.
Honouring a guest in Fiji Conference
Michael as the chief guest was decorated in this
way for the whole of the visit! This was the
first South Pacific SOMA Conference and it
drew many from Japan – a blessed time of
healing of scars from the war.
Archbishop Runcie now presides at Lambeth
Left to right: Sundar Clarke, Moderator of the
Church of South India, Bishop Gresford Chitemo of
Tanzania, Michael, Archbishop Manasses of Kenya,
Archbishop Runcie of Canterbury, Rev David
Harper, (at this time in New Zealand,) Archbishop
Bill Burnett, South Africa, Bishop Moses Tay,
A warm greeting!
The early church practice of greeting at a certain
point in the Eucharist service is revived!
The Rev. Niall Griffin, national director of Ireland,
and his wife.
The Bishop of Nelson and Rev. Malcolm Welch, New
The Renewal in New Zealand was strong from the
SOMA in Burundi, Africa
SOMA teams always said they received more than
they ever gave, on trips. Teams quickly became
We're off again!
Fr Michael Harper Foundation
3 West View, Newnham Croft
Cambridge CB3 9JB, UK
Tel: +44 1223 362933