REUNION TOUR?

Monday, October 19th, 2009 | Uncategorized

According to Damian Thompson, there are going to be a couple of press conferences tomorrow regarding Anglicans and Roman Catholics.  From the Vatican:

We inform accredited journalists that tomorrow, Tuesday 20 October 2009, at 11am, in the John Paul II Hall of the Press Office of the Holy See, a briefing will be held on a theme pertaining to the relationship with the Anglicans, at which His Eminence Cardinal William Joseph Levada, Prefect of the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, and His Excellency Mgr Joseph Augustine Di Noia OP, Secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments will take part.

And from Lambeth Palace:

You are invited to a press conference with Archbishop Vincent Nichols (Archbishop of Westminster) and Archbishop Rowan Williams (Archbishop of Canterbury) on Tuesday 20 October at 1000. The press conference will take place at 39 Eccleston Square, London SW1V 1BX.

What, if anything, does all this mean?  No idea.  Like the President said during the campaign, that’s above my pay grade.  The second presser could mean that the Archbishops of Westminster and Canterbury will both announce their support for some kind of climate change agreement.  Or it could mean something else.

Stay tuned.

42 Comments to REUNION TOUR?

William Tighe
October 19, 2009

10 am GMT is 11 am Rome time, so they will take place simultaneously — at 6 am East Coast time tomorrow.

Fuinseoig
October 19, 2009

There seems to be some speculation that this is going to be about the Traditional Anglican Communion coming into full unity with Rome.

If that’s true, that’s going to be a big thing: for one, it would involve recognising the validity of Anglican orders (because I can’t see a whole host of Anglican bishops who split away from Canterbury agreeing to be re-ordained, for one thing).

Woo – big doings! Well, we’ll know in about eight hours or so (my time).

Kozaburo
October 19, 2009

Odd. The recognition of Anglican orders is unlikely and certainly the beans would have been spilled on something so dramatic a long time ago. I think it’s more likely that Rowan is converting.

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot
October 19, 2009

I did not realize that the Archdruid would be part of the press conference. I thought I had this figured out but now I’m puzzled.

FW Ken
October 19, 2009

Given what the present pope had to say about Anglican Orders while he was head of the CDF, I can’t see the TAC coming into full Communion under their present ordinations. Moreover, their bishops, not just he priests, are married, and if I’m not mistaken, some are divorced and re-married. All of which suggests nothing definitive will happen.

I do believe the TAC bishops have all signed a copy of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, signifying their doctrinal submission; if they have been working quietly to resolve the issues of praxis and Orders, I might be wrong.

William Tighe
October 19, 2009

All the TAC bishops have agreed, either to accept reordination if Rome requires it of them, or to require into lay communion (for those who have been divorced-and-remarried) if Rome requires it of them. I can assure you, no Roman recognition of “Anglican Orders” is in prospect.

William Tighe
October 19, 2009

Perhaps the London press conference will assure the world that whatever Rome is doing for some Anglicans, there still remains a rosy ecumenical future between Rome and Canterbury. Perhaps also it might even end with the participants singing a rousing chorus of “Always look on the bright side of life” from the final scene of Monty Python’s “Life of Brian.”

FW Ken
October 19, 2009

Kozaburo -

We cross-posted, and I have to say: that’s the most fascinating prospect of all. Of course, I’m sure that the ABC would renounce his various heretical positions, eh?

Fuinseoig
October 19, 2009

Professor Tighe, if the TAC bishops have agreed to that, that is indeed a big concession on their part and recognition of Roman discipline.

WTF, if these guys are coming in as a uniate or a personal prelature or something – and at the moment this is all pure speculation and rumour – then the Archbishop of Canterbury needs to be there to make an announcement about releasing them from their Anglican orders or whatever. Kind of like what the Presiding Bishop is doing with Bishop Ackerman, only without all the suing and deposing and unilateral action and suchlike ;-)

Of course, it could just be something along the lines of if the Church of England is indeed going to have women bishops, then bye bye any prospect of reunification or closer communion for this century. No idea what is going to happen!

Christopher, as a side note, seeing as how Vin Nichols is Our Guy there, you might be interested to know how the Paddy Power bookmakers are calling the odds on the next Archbishop of Canterbury (they got it right for Archbishop Nichols so it might be interesting to see the punters’ opinion); the frontrunners to date are:

John Sentamu 9/4
Richard Chartres 10/3

http://www.paddypower.com/bet/novelty-betting/current-affairs/archbishop-of-canterbury/Next-Archbishop-of-Canterbury-1048591.html?

Just in case anyone feels like having a flutter! ;-)

J.M. Heinrichs
October 19, 2009

They’re announcing the results of a major study: “Grape Juice vs Wine: Are the Baptists Right?”

Cheers

PNP, OP
October 19, 2009

Recognition of Anglican orders? No. You can’t imagine the turmoil that would cause in the RCC. No way. The most intractable problem for Rome would be having to tell female Anglican priests that they aren’t Roman priests. Imagine the wailing. Imagine the gnashing. O! The rending!

Since my Dominican brother, Fr. Gus DiNoia, OP is an expert in ecumenism and a member of the CDF, my best guess is that this is some sort of announcement of VERY preliminary steps towards something like a personal prelature.

The Vatican is not in the habit of moving quickly to do much of anything. . .and a secret like the recognition of Anglican orders would be leaked the second it was even considered.

This will be something relatively minor, if more than just symbolic.

Fr. Philip, OP

The young fogey
October 19, 2009

That Archbishop Nichols and Dr Williams are involved suggests to me that this is not about TAC but perhaps Pope Benedict is bringing on board the last sincere English Anglo-Papalists (Andrew Burnham and at least a good chunk of Forward in Faith) in the sort of RC national-parishes arrangement I’d like to see for them. (Rowan’s presence suggests the C of E might even be accommodating and parishes would keep their buildings.) Sugarcoated as Dr Tighe suggests with some bullocks about continued rosy ecumenical talks with Canterbury.

Fuinseoig
October 20, 2009

Guys, remember, the Church thinks in centuries. Sure, Canterbury has been Anglican for five centuries, but in the long run, what’s another five more or less? ;-)

PNP, OP
October 20, 2009

Just announced here in Rome: “In this Apostolic Constitution the Holy Father has introduced a canonical structure that provides for such corporate reunion by establishing Personal Ordinariates which will allow former Anglicans to enter full communion with the Catholic Church while preserving elements of the distinctive Anglican spiritual and liturgical patrimony.”

Prepare to listen to the lib Anglicans and lib UK Catholics screaming bloody murder…

Fr. Philip, OP

Katherine
October 20, 2009

I see the announcement, via the AP, but I don’t see details. A “new church structure” which will allow them to “maintain…their Anglican identity and many of their liturgical traditions.”

It doesn’t say anything about orders, and of course former Anglican bishops can’t be Catholic bishops if they are divorced and remarried, or married at all.

If the Vatican gave Canterbury the courtesy of notification beforehand, I’m assuming this includes more than only the TAC, and so its organization may not continue as is.

alfonso
October 20, 2009

The new details will come later. There is no recognition of Anglican orders. There is no communion with Anglicans. There is no exception that one must stop being Anglican and become Roman Catholic. There is, however, an “easier” path, whereby one can continue using much of the prayer book style worship, and have former anglican first-tier leadership.

Tim Ferguson
October 20, 2009

What does it mean when the Anglican Archbishop of Canterbury signs a statement acknowledging that the Petrine ministry is “willed by Christ for his Church” ?

Obituary
October 20, 2009

Does this mean the local RC branch office will be selling life jackets at a discount? I thought we were going to use a boat? The Titanic I believe was the name.

Katherine
October 20, 2009

I’m still confused about the practical shape of this. Apparently the detailed document is yet to be released at the Vatican. Various sources, including Damian Thompson in London are saying that the “personal prelature” means that these ex-Anglican groups can be supervised by a converted priest who will function in all ways but name as a bishop, and who can be married (but not divorced and remarried, and the same applies to priests).

Mark Windsor
October 20, 2009

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/author/damianthompson/

Damian Thompson has quite a bit on the subject.

FW Ken
October 20, 2009

I don’t have time to read it all, but it looks like an extension of the Pastoral Provision currently in place in the U.S. Anglican Use parishes are currently under the local Latin Rite bishop, and there have been allegations that some bishops (Card. Mahoney, for one) have suppressed AU activity in their dioceses. Hopefully, this will pave the way for an Anglican Rite, parallel to the Eastern Rites. Such a structure, independent of the Latin Rite but in Communion with the Catholic Church, would certainly pave the way for groups such as the TAC.

But this is not some sort of corporate reunion of Anglicanism and Catholicism. Become a Catholic under this provision will still mean affirming that all the Catholic Church teaches is revealed by God. It means the Marian dogmas, papal infallibility, transubstantiation, auricular confession, and so on.

http://www.newliturgicalmovement.org/#9058532240226249705

FW Ken
October 20, 2009

Katherine -

I think it would be a bishop supervising them, presumably unmarried. Married men could be ordained priests, but not bishop, much as in the Eastern Rite.

Mark Windsor
October 20, 2009

Ken,

I’ve read most of what I can find, and here’s what I take away.

The new structure will be more like the Archdiocese of Military Services. There will be bishops dedicated to this structure, and priests, but without geography playing a major part. The geographical elements will be the same size as the local bishops conference. That means, you might have one “anglican” bishop for all of the US, one for Canada, etc. 20 bishops have already applied for the provision.

This would allow the local ordinaries to avoid interference by lib-cat bishops. Mahoney won’t be able to do anything to the local ordinary in the US.

I don’t think this will equate to either an Anglican Rite or an extended Anglican Use. The new specifically says that the new liturgical docs need to be approved by Rome, so it won’t be Anglican Use, per se as those are already approved. Damian Thompson suggests that many Anglicans will simply adopt the new liturgical language recently approved by Rome from ICEL, so that may not even be a sticking point.

I can’t wait to see the lib-cat reaction. Fr. Philip is right, there will be a great wailing and gnashing of teeth once they realize that the Anglicans can be married. Quick! Somebody poke a Jesuit and see if he jumps!

Mark Windsor
October 20, 2009

I forgot about the moderation for new e-mail addresses. Feel free to drop one of the posts, Chris, but I want to get this in before Ken settles into work for the day.

Ken, this gets around both the Anglican Use and the idea of an Anglican Rite. It’s more along the lines of the Archdiocese of Military Services. It would have its own structure and bishops, but without geography playing such an important role. One report said that the geography would be based on the local bishops conference. That would mean something like an anglican bishop of the US, or Canada, or wherever. But it would place the jurisdiction outside the reach of the existing lib-cat bishops. That way, Mahoney can’t touch their liturgical elements at all.

Also, it’s something different than the Anglican Use. The doc specifically says that the liturgical documents used by the new structure would have to be approved by Rome. Given that the Anglican Use is already approved, it would have to be something slightly different. I don’t see how it could be just a simple “globalization” of the Anglican Use.

Damian Thompson even says that the new structure might just start using the new translations due out next year, recently approved by Rome from ICEL.

Just FYI, the Apostolic Constitution is one of the highest levels of Church documents. If I’m not mistaken (and I may be), that puts it on the same level as Lumen Gentium and the docs from V-II!

The Tiber’s waters just got a bit warmer!

alfonso
October 20, 2009

Ken/Katherine,

This initial report specifies that leadership may indeed be a priest (ex-Anglican Bishop).

Bill (not IB)
October 20, 2009

As others have already noted, the elephant in the room still hasn’t been addressed – Anglican Orders are not recognized, so priests must undergo retraining and ordination (not “re-ordination”, since the RCC maintains they were never ordained in the first place.) and cannot re-marry if their wife dies.

It’s certainly a nice idea. But there’s not much of anything really new when it comes to *how* Anglicans cross the Tiber; it’s just a different arrangement of the chairs on the far side of the river.

FW Ken
October 20, 2009

Mark and Alfonso – thanks for the clarifications. In fact, the Anglican Use has an assigned priest who coordinates affairs – it’s Fr. Bill Stetson, and Bp. Myers is the “Ecclesiastical Delegate”, which I suppose means he represents the pope. At one point,
there was talk of Clarence Pope, sometime Episcopal bishop of Fort Worth, taking an effectively episcopal role in the AU, but that didn’t happen. For my money, I don’t see how anything more significant will happen (except maybe the TAC thing) unless there is separate episcopal ministry.

http://www.pastoralprovision.org/

Mark – I did read in one report that the American Book of Divine Worship may serve as a template, or source for an Anglican liturgy. We’ll see.

And yes, Bill (not IB) – you reinforce my earlier point. This is not a “get out of schism free” card (sorry, I couldn’t resist). There will actually be changes of mind and, perhaps heart, that people, particularly the ordained, will need to undergo. It’s not all about nice liturgy (and lord knows, we Catholics need some of that) or real community feeling (yes, we need that too). There are doctrines and disciplines to accept. Or not.

c matt
October 20, 2009

So…assuming this all goes through, etc., what does that mean for us cradle Catholics – could we join one of these parishes (or whatever they will be designated)? Can we attend their Masses, take communion, etc.?

Mark Windsor
October 20, 2009

Well, it must be a good thing. The National Catholic Distorter has the story, and the lib-cats are in a sour mood. Fr. Philip, you were correct, but it’s not just on the UK side.

[...] Baseball” and instructive Reuters: Pope makes it easier for Anglicans to convert Midwest Conservative Journal American Papist Comments [...]

Mark Windsor
October 20, 2009

C-Matt – should be ok, in the same way it’s ok to go to a Byzantine or Maronite parish now. We’ll have to wait on the details, but so far I haven’t seen anything in the news that would limit crossing that line.

Interestingly, one commenter on Fr. Z’s blog says that this could impact the Novus Ordo form in a long-term kinda way.

Daniel Muller
October 20, 2009

So…assuming this all goes through, etc., what does that mean for us cradle Catholics – could we join one of these parishes (or whatever they will be designated)? Can we attend their Masses, take communion, etc.?

[No we cannot take It, but we can receive It. Sorry, could not resist.]

Of course we can, just as we can receive in other Catholic rites. This is not even a separate rite, much more like separate dioceses.

Fuinseoig
October 20, 2009

Wow, is all I can say so far.

Will have to see details, but yeah – this is a big step forwards, and certainly not along the lines of past ecumenical dialogue.

Maureen
October 20, 2009

Easier than joining the military in order to join a military diocese. :)

Mark
October 20, 2009

Big question I’m not clear on: will these Ordinariates accept married men as new candidates for ordination? Or will they only “grandfather” in married men who were previously ordained as Anglicans?

Mark
October 20, 2009

Oh I see Fr. Kimel asked exactly the same question on SF, so I suppose it is probably not clear to anyone.

Daniel Muller
October 20, 2009

Big question I’m not clear on: will these Ordinariates accept married men as new candidates for ordination? Or will they only “grandfather” in married men who were previously ordained as Anglicans?

New married priests would only be possible if there were a separate rite. They will be part of the Latin Rite, which adheres to the tradition of celibacy. So no. Only grandfather Fathers with “mothers.”

You might consider that under no conditions will there be “new” married bishops, so as in the Orthodox Church, a married man entering the priesthood would be in a dead-end street, so to speak.

You might also consider that married permanent deacons are quite common in the Latin Rite.

Daniel Muller
October 20, 2009

Thinking that if His Eyebrows had been involved, this had nothing to do with the TAC, I was surprised to find that they will be wasting no time in manning the boats.

The See of Augustine remains a focus of our pilgrim way, as it was in ages of faith in the past.

That is going to leave a mark.

Katherine
October 20, 2009

Daniel Muller, are you assuming your answer with respect to future ordinations of married men is correct, or do you see it in the announcements somewhere?

This is more extensive than the previous Anglican Use provision. Anglican parishes would be part of an Anglican grouping supervised by an ordinary who would usually be a formerly Anglican priest or bishop, but he won’t be a bishop in the new entity unless unmarried. It provides that the ordinary may establish a seminary for the training of new priests (fully consistent with Catholic doctrine, of course) but so far I don’t see anything that says the Latin discipline of celibacy will be required. If it’s optional, this could become a big can of worms for the regular Latin dioceses.

Whitestone
October 20, 2009

It’s really brilliant.

The pope simultaneously kicked the c–p out of both the Anglican liberals and his own rebellious bishops and liberals from the top on down.

People and priests can opt out from under liberal US Catholic bishops as well.

This is a unique form of discipline that is long overdue. I thought I recognized a special twinkle in Benedict’s eye when he came for the US tour. Bet he’s giggling and snorfing a bit.

Congratulations, Papa. Wish I could join you. (but there’s the small matter of CCC 481)

Liturgy
October 21, 2009

Your readers may be interested in this perspective:
http://www.liturgy.co.nz/blog/end-of-anglican-communion/1756

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