Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Papal visit: later Anglican angles

The Pope did mention Anglicanorum Coetibus in his remarks to the Roman Catholic bishops at Oscott on Sunday. He said this:

…The other matter I touched upon in February with the Bishops of England and Wales, when I asked you to be generous in implementing the Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum Coetibus. This should be seen as a prophetic gesture that can contribute postitively to the developing relations between Anglicans and Catholics. It helps us to set our sights on the ultimate goal of all ecumenical activity: the restoration of full ecclesial communion in the context of which the mutual exchange of gifts from our respective spiritual patrimonies serves as an enrichment to us all. Let us continue to pray and work unceasingly in order to hasten the joyful day when the goal can be accomplished.

Last Friday, the Archbishop of Canterbury gave an interview to Vatican Radio. You can read the full transcript of that at Vatican Radio Interview Archbishop after Evening Prayer with Pope Benedict XVI in Westminster Abbey.

The Tablet reported some reactions of Anglican bishops to the visit, see Anglican bishops encouraged by papal visit.

Volumes of articles have been published about John Henry Newman in the past few days, but here are just two items:

Guardian Stephen Bates John Henry Newman: An unlikely candidate for sainthood?

New York Review of Books Garry Wills Stealing Newman

Posted by Simon Sarmiento on Tuesday, 21 September 2010 at 9:17am BST | TrackBack
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' - "I shall drink to the Pope, if you please - still, to conscience first and to the Pope afterwards" reassures them (his audience), placing informed individual rational thought ahead of blind obedience.'

- Stephen Bates, Guardian - re John H. Newman -

This was, arguably, perhaps the most important reference ever made by Cardianl Newman about his respect for personal conscience over loyalty to the Pope. And one which, no doubt, Pope Benedict was mindful of before he, himself, was raised by the Roman Curia to his present role as Pontiff.

What the world is now waiting for is for the present holder of the papal office to personally affirm this stance of the most-recently promoted *Blessed* in the Roman Calendar. In fact, if this were to happen, I'm sure we Anglicans could seriously consider putting Blessed John Henry Newman into our own official Kalendar of The Saints of England.

Posted by: Father Ron Smith on Tuesday, 21 September 2010 at 12:34pm BST

Bravo Garry Wills ... somebody has to speak up and say that the emperor is in fact, naked and embarrassing us all by this new clothing claim as he parades about amid throngs of noisy public admirers who prefer the bowdlerized Newman to the real, historical man.

This instance drives oddly near to Dawkin's assertion that faith must always violate and twist both common sense reason, and any/all facts so far available - in order to remain its solid gold Self ... singular, untouchable by either facts or by reason. Faith as an Idol, then?

Follow this way at your spiritual and earthly peril, alas, Lord have mercy.

Posted by: drdanfee on Tuesday, 21 September 2010 at 7:19pm BST

I'm sure we Anglicans could seriously consider putting Blessed John Henry Newman into our own official Kalendar of The Saints of England.

Isn't he already there on August 11 (rather than the date Rome has chosen)?

Posted by: Mynsterpreost (=david rowett) on Tuesday, 21 September 2010 at 8:26pm BST

B16: "the restoration of full ecclesial communion in the context of which the mutual exchange of gifts from our respective spiritual patrimonies serves as an enrichment to us all"

Translation: "Ecclesia Anglicana choirs keep singing lovely, while 'We' Infallibly/ Omnipotently Rule them!"

Dream on, Joe...

Posted by: JCF on Tuesday, 21 September 2010 at 9:33pm BST

Umm, yes. Anglican, following tradition, the day of his death; Roman (somewhat a poke in the eye, what?), the day of his reception into the Roman communion.

Posted by: Christopher (P.) on Tuesday, 21 September 2010 at 10:14pm BST

What date has Rome chosen ? Did they not know of the August date ? Bit of a cheek.

Posted by: Laurence Roberts on Tuesday, 21 September 2010 at 10:53pm BST

Lies and more damned lies.

As Prof Diarmaid MacCulloch said on BBC Radio 4 last Sunday - the Popes claim that "secularist and aggressive atheists" are attacking the heart of Christian Europe is "code" for -
Despite everything I say Homosexuals are claiming their human rights to: life, a family and marriage eight the way across Europe!!

This is politics - and politics as only the Vatican can play it.

The sad face of all this is that the spin, lies, racism and homophobia we hear being peddled - comes alongside a call to Holiness - and it reveals the character of this abusive Church for what it is. To use His Holinesses own words "intrinsically evil".

Posted by: Martin Reynolds on Tuesday, 21 September 2010 at 11:39pm BST

In a sense I agree with a lot that Martin says ..I believe the Vatican should be far more explicit in what they are condemning. The whole lovey dovey approach with Archbishop Rowan Williams stinks to me of rank hypocrisy and double speak.

However what grieves me..is to have the Papal message ( albeit nuanced ) undermined by the English hierarchy.

Furthermore I am saddened when I see Newman hi--jacked by the theological liberals. Yes he did feel that to proclaim papal infallibility would be a masiteke, ewhen Vatican One convened. However he wholeheratedly assented to it , when it was made de fide. To Newman a conscience had to be correctly formed and should never be used as a license to justify sin.

Posted by: Robert Ian Williams on Wednesday, 22 September 2010 at 11:50am BST

The Tablet says the October date was chosen to enable universities with Newman Centres to celebrate during the university session, not during the long vac in August......

Posted by: Mynsterpreost (=david rowett) on Wednesday, 22 September 2010 at 11:02pm BST

Of course Martin and Diarmaid have made the correct analysis. As I pointed out the Pope spoke Vaticanese and Latin but not English.

Whilst I do not believe his message is evil, as a Catholic faithful to Magisterium , I ask why are his comments so nuanced.

That is why I felt the Russian Orthodox Metropolitan who visited Lambeth was far more forthright.

To me the Pope kissing Rowan, and not being really open about difficulties is totally baffling.


Posted by: Robert Ian Williams on Thursday, 23 September 2010 at 6:54am BST

"I ask why are his comments so nuanced"

Because intelligent Roman Catholicism is nuanced. Always has been.

Posted by: Erika Baker on Thursday, 23 September 2010 at 9:09am BST

"Whilst I do not believe his message is evil, as a Catholic faithful to Magisterium , I ask why are his comments so nuanced. That is why I felt the Russian Orthodox Metropolitan who visited Lambeth was far more forthright. To me the Pope kissing Rowan, and not being really open about difficulties is totally baffling."

I know, RIW, I know. I too fail to understand why the church hierarchy so often lacks the wisdom and depth of faith to agree with me. If only they'd ASK me first, I could save them SO much trouble...;-)

Posted by: Mynsterpreost (=david rowett) on Thursday, 23 September 2010 at 10:40am BST

"That is why I felt the Russian Orthodox Metropolitan who visited Lambeth was far more forthright.

To me the Pope kissing Rowan, and not being really open about difficulties is totally baffling." - Robert Ian Williams -

1. Even though the Orthodox Patriarch may have been worng! Yes, he was certainly forthright.

2. Perhaps the Pope here was more compassionate than you, Robert. A very Christian virtue.

Posted by: Father Ron Smith on Thursday, 23 September 2010 at 12:25pm BST

I have to agree with Robert Ian Williams on this one.

Posted by: Laurence Roberts on Thursday, 23 September 2010 at 10:21pm BST

"John Henry Newman, beatified (yesterday) by Pope Benedict in Birmingham, was held in considerable suspicion by the Catholic hierarchy of his time. It is ironic that a conservative Pope has chosen to co-opt this subtle thinker as a poster boy for his traditionalist cause. Newman famously remarked that he would “drink to the Pope if you please, still to conscience first and the Pope afterwards”.

That combination of courtesy and integrity is a model for us all.' - Jill Segert, Ekklesia -

Yes. This has to be remembered - in connection with the Pope's visit - that John Henry was not a papist; in the sense that he considered the private consience to be primary over magisterial dogma issuing from the 'Chair of Peter'. Perhaps, in this way, we could all acknowledge John Henry's post-mortem message to the Church which has seen fit to beatify his memory.

Perhaps we can being to realise how the recent beatification of JHN could be a tacit implication of the primacy of conscience over centralised authority systems in the Church.

Posted by: Father Ron Smith on Saturday, 25 September 2010 at 12:43am BST
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