THINKING ANGLICANS

some ordinariate news and views

First, Jared Cramer wrote an article Wounding and Grace: A Brief Appraisal of the Roman Catholic Ordinariate, Anglican Christianity, and Modern Ecumenism.

Next, the Bishop of London spoke to his diocesan synod and among other things said this:

Another aspect of the turbulence to which I have referred is of course the Bishop of Fulham’s retirement. Bishop John has served the Diocese for more than forty years in variety of roles and many of us have reason to be grateful for his ministry. He has the gift of colourful speech and there may be some Synod members unconvinced by his suggestion that he was leaving a “fascist” institution for Liberty Hall on Tiber. All people, however, who act conscientiously deserve our understanding.

There does however seem to be a degree of confusion about whether those entering the Ordinariate like Bishop John might be able to negotiate a transfer of properties or at the least explore the possibility of sharing agreements in respect of particular churches. For the avoidance of confusion I have to say that as far as the Diocese of London is concerned there is no possibility of transferring properties. As to sharing agreements I have noted the Archbishop of Westminster’s comment that his “preference is for the simplest solutions. The simplest solutions are for those who come into Catholic communion to use Catholic churches”. I am also mindful that the late Cardinal Hume, whom I greatly revered, brought to an end the experiment of church sharing after the Synod’s decision of 1992 because far from being conducive to warmer ecumenical relations it tended to produce more rancour.

And the Primate of the Traditional Anglican Communion (a body whose members are primarily in India and Africa, see my report here) issued a statement, available in full over here.

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Lapinbizarre
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Lapinbizarre

How many times does one have to repeat that the primate of the “Traditional Anglican Communion” is a divorced and remarried former Roman Catholic priest?

Joe Episcopalian
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Joe Episcopalian

“He has the gift of colourful speech and there may be some Synod members unconvinced by his suggestion that he was leaving a ‘fascist’ institution for Liberty Hall on Tiber.”

Being an American, my English isn’t so good, but I think the Bishop said something snarkily hilarious. Can bishops do that in public?

John
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John

The posting of the Bishop of London’s thoughts seems to invite comment on the current situation at Father Ed’s church: http://www.sbarnabas.com/blog/ I would like here to put on record my view that – admittedly, after much provocation – the Diocese of Rochester is behaving meanly in discountenancing any ‘shared church’ arrangement between those (the majority in that church) who wish to join the Ordinariate and those who do not. I hope others on TA will join me in expressing that sentiment. Everybody knows that the C of E has too many churches. Everybody also knows that the C of E… Read more »

Bill Dilworth
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Bill Dilworth

The TAC statement quoted an Anglican in Texas getting ready to join the ordinariate thus:

“We have knocked at the doors of Holy Mother Church and those doors have been flung wide for us; a spiritual feast awaits; we hear the choirs of angels from within; the Holy Spirit calls to each of us…”

So, if Holy Mother Church’s door have only just now been flung open for you, and it’s someplace where a spiritual feast awaits you, what the hell was Anglo-Catholicism?

Father Ron Smith
Guest

“As to sharing agreements, I have noted the Archbishops of Westminster’s comment that his ‘preference is for the simplest solutions’. The simplest solutions are for those who come into Catholic communion to use Catholic churches'” If this is how their new Faith Leader sees the ideal situation as needing to take into account their new allegiance to Roman Catholicism, then surely the Roman neophytes ought to be glad to accept that ruling. I cannot but agree with both the Anglican Bishop of London and the Roman Catholic Cardinal, that when you choose a new ‘life partner’ you must be prepared… Read more »

Br. William Henry
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Br. William Henry

“”We have knocked at the doors of Holy Mother Church and those doors have been flung wide for us; a spiritual feast awaits; we hear the choirs of angels from within; the Holy Spirit calls to each of us…””

May they enjoy the Italian Church’s superb sacred music tradition of these last 40 years, the glorious hymnody available to them in the pews, and last but not least the robust hymn singing which Rome is so noted for in Christendom.

Robert ian willaims
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Robert ian willaims

I agree with the Bishop of london…the ordinariate groups should worship in Catholic Churches. The Catholic Church will not allow legal disputes to cloud entry of any groups.

evensongjunkie
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evensongjunkie

“…we hear the choirs of angels from within; ….”

Must be singing “(B)eagle’s Wings” and “Bread of Life”.

That’s okay, I’ll just hit the cruise control button and have a little Herbert Howells neat.

JCF
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JCF

“the late Cardinal Hume…brought to an end the experiment of church sharing after the Synod’s decision of 1992 because far from being conducive to warmer ecumenical relations it tended to produce more rancour”

Hmmm. What’s the dish? (I can imagine this being literally true, and I can also imagine this being a euphemism for something quite different)

Geoff
Guest

How many times does one have to repeat that the primate of the “Traditional Anglican Communion” is a divorced and remarried former Roman Catholic priest?

I’ve heard it repeated many times myself, but I’m never clear as to how, in that case, he ascended to the primacy of TAC, which is supposed to share the Roman view of the indissolubility of marriage. Have they their own annulment tribunals?

Father Ron Smith
Guest

“Why could we not reach out together with the Gospel? Where is the need for division? Why do we look to build walls when God always calls us to form bridges?” – Fr. Ed Tomlinson – In his message to his parishioners at St. Barnabas’ after a parish meeting which discussed the ‘way forward’, even Fr. Ed seems to be a little confused about what he ought to be doing if he is serious about joining the ‘Ordinariate’. The clear message from his new boss, the cardinal Archbishop of Westminster, has said that the new ‘Catholics’ must be prepared to… Read more »

Richard Grand
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Richard Grand

In reply to John Moles, you seem to think that property is something that can be handed around like Christmas gifts. If a congregation wants to go, that’s up to them, but expecting to take property worth thousands of pounds with them that they don’t own is absurd and naive. What diocese would just hand over its valuable property to just anyone who asks or thinks they deserve it? Taking the action of leaving and then taking the property with them is disrespectful of the years people spent supporting a Parish as Anglicans and the current congregation should never have… Read more »

Richard Grand
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Richard Grand

“We have knocked at the doors of Holy Mother Church and those doors have been flung wide for us; a spiritual feast awaits; we hear the choirs of angels from within; the Holy Spirit calls to each of us…” May they find the nirvana they expect, but many Roman Catholics are less certain that their Church is heaven on earth. That kind of talk is so pie in the sky that it’s silly. May reality never confront them. It’s interesting that this choir of angels regards them as sub-Christian and requires that they be confirmed and their clergy re-ordained on… Read more »

Adam Armstrong
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Adam Armstrong

Heaven must have no women or gay people if the Roman Church is heaven on earth.

Erika Baker
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Erika Baker

John, if I was a Bishop following the public ordinariate debate and hearing a lot from priests steeped in a bout of aggressive self pity who talk a lot about loving those who disagree with them but who have already sown seeds of division within their own Anglo-Catholic movement, I’d think very very very carefully whether it wouldn’t be more healing for the now divided parishes if there was a clear split and not an arrangement whereby the two sides were expected to work together sharing the same church. Especially as the Roman Catholic church has already indicated its own… Read more »

Martin Reynolds
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Martin Reynolds

My understanding is there is already a small group investigating those who are seeking ordination as RC priests.

I am told that the idea that priest and people will be accepted “with open arms” but without serious questions is a myth.
An ultra conservative group with roots in Scotland has already started to identify and supply evidence to RC bishops that some of these Anglicans have same-sex partners, and are determined to cause mischief for even the most discrete, especially those who also have wives.

Clive
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Clive

@Adam, my eyes must be deceiving me: for all around me at Mass this Sunday there were women. How strange. And although I personally am heterosexual – my apologies if that offends you – I do have gay Catholic friends.

However, I don’t quite see how the modern Catholic church can possibly be heaven on earth; where’s the incense?

tommiaquinas
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tommiaquinas

Fr Smith, the Archbishop of Westminster would not be Fr Ed’s new boss. The Constitution makes it quite clear that Ordinariate priests are answerable to the Ordinary, who is directly answerable to the Vatican.

And +Westminster is not a cardinal!

Doug
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Doug

The Primate of TAC wrote the following regarding the Ordinariate:
“It is also a time to remember in our prayers the Archbishop of Canterbury, who acknowledged recently in Rome the prophetic witness of this initiative.”

What Archbishop Williams actually said:
“But prophetic? Maybe yes, in the sense that here is the Roman Catholic Church saying there are ways of being Christian in the Western Church which are not restricted by historic Roman Catholic identity – that’s something we can talk about.”

Perhaps the TAC Primate merely overlooked the word “maybe.”

Adam Armstrong
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Adam Armstrong

@Clive. You missed the point. The actual and factual reason why the Ordinariate has been offered and accepted by some Anglo-Catholics is their objection to the ordination of women and “liberal” ideas about the acceptance of same-sex relationships. That’s the Rome they want, otherwise they have had no reason to wait until now. What Rome plans to do about gay Anglo-Catholic clergy remains to be seen and there is more than enough hypocrisy to go around. And “some of my friends are gay” is an offensive statement. It’s a time-honoured way of saying that “I interact with them, but never… Read more »

david rowett
Guest

(Apologies for Off Topic, but I don’t suppose that Br William Henry happens to be a Franciscan with links to Teeside does he? In case of which extreme unlikeliness, ‘Hi’.)

Father Ron Smith
Guest

“The Ordinariate merely winks at some Anglican peculiarities for the purpose of drawing together those who are like-minded on other things. It is not grounded in Christian ecclesiology, but rather is a path to draw together like minds. The Christian Gospel, of course, is about reconciling diverse minds and groups in a unified body.” – Jared C. Kramer – Jared Kramer’s article – about the Ordinariates – refers to the wisdom of a former great Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Michael Ramsey, whose longing for ‘organic unity’ of the Christian Churches even extended to his movement towards union with the Methodist… Read more »

A seeker after truth
Guest
A seeker after truth

I fear that the Bishop of London is not a wise man and he is certainly in need of a reality-check! I have heard him preach twice recently and once you get behind the bluff and bluster there is very little substance. The simple fact is that an Anglican Bishop is as powerless in a Parish (where a freehold parson and PCC hold the trump cards) as he is in a Cathedral (where the Dean holds all the trump cards). If there is goodwill between a group leaving to join the ordinariate and those staying behind then an amicable sharing… Read more »

Clive
Guest
Clive

@Adam. Relax, I was pulling your leg. And I wouldn’t ever say some of my friends are gay. What I meant was, some of my friends are Catholic.

Chris Smith
Guest
Chris Smith

This is all sounding too silly. Those Anglicans who have chosen to become Roman Catholics need to move on and join a Roman Catholic Community that already exists. It makes those who are angry over women’s ordination and the inclusion of glbt people look like angry little children. Drama Queens for certain,(such as the former Anglican Bishop who left his crosier and mitre in front of a religious shrine) acting like a spoiled child instead of behaving like people trying to live out the gospels of Jesus. By all means, I wish them to go in PEACE but it is… Read more »

Erika Baker
Guest
Erika Baker

Chris
“Those Anglicans who have chosen to become Roman Catholics need to move on and join a Roman Catholic Community that already exists”

But that’s the contradiction at the heart of the ordinariate. These people do not want to be Roman Catholics, they could have done that years ago. They want to be Roman Catholics in their own group preserving some undefined Anglican patrimony.
There would be nothing left of the Anglican whatever it is they’re trying to keep if they had to integrate into a conventional RC parish.

robert ian williams
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robert ian williams

The English ordinariate is going to have so few laity, its going to be a farce. The Vatican have been duped by con men promising them hundreds of thousands of converts.

Smart move , not to allow Anglican church buildings for joint worship as this will lessen the number of converts.

But never mind the churches, where are the convert clergy going to be housed…courtesy of the Catholic bishops who they don’t want to be under!

John Roch
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John Roch

@erica Ignoring the official services of the Church of England seems to be the norm. To my cynical mind, the only “Anglican” thing about the clergy is that they have lived in the parsonage, taken the stipend, and look forward to the pension. @RIW The Vatican would certainly appear to have been misled into thinking that there is some Anglican aspect that these people would want to keep. Stroppiness is what occurs to me. 🙂 @A seeker Diocesan staff are only too aware of where the funding comes from. Many (most?) of those working in “the Office” are members of… Read more »

john
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john

Essentially, I’m with ‘seeker’ (though, it seems, from the other side of the fence). What is the point of allowing (or forcing) churches to close? The 20-odd in Father Ed’s church who don’t want to join the Ordinariate can’t possibly sustain that building. I very much hope that Anglicans across a very wide spectrum can agree on the pathetic performance of the hierarchy in helping their local churches. I’m sorry to see that Fr Ed himself seems to have changed his tune and seems no longer to be fighting for a space in St Barnabas’. I’d like him to fight.… Read more »

Robert Ian Wiliams
Guest
Robert Ian Wiliams

This what one Ordinariate bound Anglo Catholic vicar is telling his congregation. I think it speaks for its self… “Whilst the Anglican church has no set position on divorce, and tends to duck the issue, the Roman Catholic church has a more consistent approach aimed at upholding the sanctity of marriage. This means that people in ‘irregular sexual relationships’ may not receive the holy sacrament. However Rome also understands human weakness and provides ‘annulment’ to ensure second (and even third!) marriages are no bar to communion if it is deemed that the original marriage(s) were not valid for a range… Read more »

Father Ron Smith
Guest

“However Rome also understands human weakness and provides ‘annulment’ to ensure second (and even third!) marriages are no bar to communion if it is deemed that the original marriage(s) were not valid for a range of reasons. These are complex but one example might be a person who was not Christian and did not fully understand marriage in the sacramental sense. There are many others and one cannot second guess the outcome.”

– Robert I. Williams –

Sounds mighty like casuistry to me, but then, I’m not a convert to R.S.ism.

Erika Baker
Guest
Erika Baker

Fr Ron,
it’s also shockingly insensitive to children. I’d rather my children knew that their father and I had a very happy marriage for many years but that it came to an end, rather than pretending it was never real in the first place.

I prefer to be honest than to play silly games, it’s healthier for my soul and for those around me.

Marika
Guest
Marika

@ a seeker after truth: your sentiments echo mine precisely and I don’t for one moment believe that I am unique among grass roots CofE members in small-town churches up and down the country – but I doubt there’s a cat’s chance that our voices will be heard, not the way both hierarchies are digging themselves in. There are successful sharing arrangements with RCs in place in a number of places around the country. I am baffled by +London’s comments about its undesirability; the people on the ground seem to pull it off well enough. So what’s the sudden problem… Read more »

robert ian williams
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robert ian williams

The annulment system has been unquestionably abused… particularly by liberals. However , here we see a so called conservative. What he states is a travesty of the truth.

Most annulments fail at the first hurdle.

John
Guest
John

I would like to keep this thread running, because I think it is very important.

I agree entirely with Marika, as with ‘seeker’. People ‘across the boundaries’ do get on, they do compromise. Of course, as a ‘liberal’, I hope that this ‘getting on’ will ultimately – does already often – blur boundaries, so that practical intercommunion results – and will ever more frequently result. I do think that is the ultimate logic of such ‘compromised’ arrangements – but do not wish to insist upon it.

Erika Baker
Guest
Erika Baker

John, people who genuinely share are usually people who respect each other. But what we have here are fragmented parishes that are going through traumatic changes. When you are wrestling with having to leave where you have come from because it is no longer true to your beliefs, you cannot at the same time genuinely respect it. That may come later, but you can see on FIF-affiliated blogs that the leavers are struggling very hard to understand those who are staying and that they are not always successful with their struggles. On his blog Bishop Alan has cited a number… Read more »

john
Guest
john

Erika, Not persuaded. (1)’No longer true to your beliefs’. That’s their perspective now – it’s the cause of the split – but in fact the ‘differences’, against the whole spectrum, are relatively minor. (2) The two contributors above seem to have practical knowledge of such arrangements working. I’m not remotely impressed by pompous or self-seeking pontifications from pompous bishops or cardinals. (3) It’s what the parish concerned (St Barnabas’) actually seemed to want. (4) I think it possible – even likely – that quite a proportion (say a third or more) of those Ordinariate-bound from St Barnabas’ will come back,… Read more »