Saturday, November 14, 2009
Tablet on the Anglicanoram Coetibus
An editorial: Which says that Anglo-Catholics ought to go through a process of RCIA, which would be life changing for them. Now that just illustrates Ms P's journals ignorance. The Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults, is precisely that a process of different Rites for the initiation into the Catholic Church of Adults, last time I looked practicing Anglicans had already been initiated, even allowing for defective or invalid sacraments, Anglicans have renounced the devil and accepted the Holy Trinity, they are already Christians Ms P!
Then there is piece by Nicholas Lash: Dear old Nick is complaining that the bishops, I think he means of E&W, and the Archbishop of Canterbury have not been consulted. I think what he was expecting was a Council or at least a Synod on this, something that would take five or ten years to organise, so long, that those pleading from adnission into the full communion would have died off by the time it met. I would hate to suggest old Nick is fixed in an Anglo-centric mindset but he doesn't seem to realise that of those wanting full-communion, most who will become Catholics are from the "Southern Cone", Australasia and the Americas. AC is primarily aimed at whole Churches coming into communion, an Episcopate, Presbyterate and Laity. Yes, it accepts that one or two C of E bishops and clergy, and even congregations might but it is not primarilly about the C of E.
I am not quite sure how Lash expected Dr Williams to have been consulted, I would have thought Rome would have thought him part of the problem, not the solution. Indeed what has brought this matter to a head is a lack of confidence in Williams' leadership.
Bobby Mickens also puts his oar in: he laments the lack of involvement of Anglican lay people in the government of the Ordinariates, here is a quote: This is a clericalised version of Anglicanism,” said the Revd Dr William Franklin, Academic Fellow at the Anglican Centre in Rome. He rejected the Vatican’s claim that this “opens new avenues” for ecumenism. “The offer seems to be a return to the philosophy of the 1928 encyclical Mortalium Animos [which] argued that the only road to Christian unity is for all to admit their errors and return to Rome,” he said
What the Tablet does not seem to get is that this whole matter rests on a fracture at the centre of world wide Anglicanism, non English Anglicans had hoped that the centre of Anglicanism would somehow be neutral, above the ordination of female or openly homosexual bishops. The English Provinces' capitulation on these issues has undermined any claim that at its centre, despite other appearances, the Anglican Communion can claim to be both "Catholic and Reformed". This is an immediate crisis that needs an immediate answer.
For Anglicans "Catholic" has meant holding on, at least in broad brush terms, to "Tradition", that which has been handed on, those stable unchanging elements of Christianity. "Reformed" has meant being able to embrace and adapt to new things, in practice what the king or government or more recently what "society" might impose, it has actually changed from Protestantism to Liberalism.
What has now happened is the floating iceberg of Reform has drifted too far from the unmoving mountain of rock of Tradition. The changes in the CofE has meant it is impossible to have a foot on both stable rock and floating ice. What the Pope is doing is offering a lifeline to those who find themselves on the mountain threatened by an oncoming tsuanami. Those who once thought of themselves belonging in the Catholic Church but have found themselves tipped into the icey drink.
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