Why is the Catholic Church cannibalising the Book of Common Prayer?

Oct 18, 2014 by

By Christopher Howse, Telegraph: I’ve always felt sympathetic to foreigners on holiday in England who come across a church advertising Mass and displaying crucifixes and statues inside. When they discover later that they have been at a service of the Church of England, not of the Roman Catholic Church, they are puzzled and confused. So what would you think if you went into a church and heard the clergyman begin: “God, unto whom all hearts be open, all desires known, and from whom no secrets are hid; cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of thy Holy Spirit…”? If you said it was an early part of the Anglican service of Holy Communion, you’d be right. But I’ve just been looking at a new service booklet with the Order of Mass according to the Use of the Ordinariate. It begins with that prayer, yet it is a Roman Catholic liturgy. Instead of bells-and-smells Anglicans stealing the Catholics’ clothes, as it were, we have Catholics (Roman Catholics) cannibalising the Book of Common Prayer. It’s the work of the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham, set up under Pope Benedict XVI to allow Anglicans become members of the Catholic Church while retaining their “Anglican patrimony”. This struck some Anglicans as poaching. More optimistic souls thought it might serve as a template for ecumenical pluralism: one Church, several traditions. Read here...

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Francis Invites the Anglicans In

Jul 23, 2014 by

By David Mills, Patheos: Francis would like Anglicans to become Catholics. With English Anglicans having yet more reason to become Catholics, now that the Church of England has voted to create women bishops, the Ordinariate Benedict formed as a way into the Catholic Church has organized an “exploration day,” and the Holy Father has conveyed “his good wishes and prayers for a successful and inspiring event. The Holy Father cordially imparts his Apostolic Blessing upon all those persons who are participating in this significant event and working in any way for the promotion and presentation of the Catholic Faith and the Gospel in Great Britain.” From the Ordinariate’s report (Mennini is the Apostolic Nuncio to Great Britain): Pope Francis’ blessing on the exploration day and Archbishop Mennini’s words of support for it follow a statement of welcome for the initiative from Cardinal Vincent Nichols. In his capacity as President of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales, the Cardinal said: “the Ordinariate both enriches the Catholic Church with Catholic aspects of the beautiful heritage and culture of Anglican patrimony and advances the cause of unity which must be the ultimate aim of all ecumenical activity. . . I wish you every success with this initiative. I hope it will attract many interested enquirers”. Understated invitations, both of them, but clear in their intent. Read...

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Prelate invites Anglicans to learn more about ordinariate

Jul 16, 2014 by

From Catholic Culture: Following the Church of England’s decision to allow women bishops, the head of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham has invited those who are “considering their future” to learn more about the ordinariate. The Church of England’s decision makes “harder the position of those within the Church of England who still long for corporate unity with the Catholic and Orthodox Churches,” said Msgr. Keith Newton. “Pope Benedict XVl’s decision to set up the ordinariates– allowing former Anglicans to enter the full communion of the Catholic Church, bringing with them much of the Anglican heritage and tradition– was made in response to repeated requests from Anglicans who longed for unity with the Catholic Church.” “On 6 September the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham is holding a Called To Be One exploration day, which is aimed at making the Ordinariate more widely known and understood and reaching those whom God may be calling to join it,” he continued. “All who are interested– whether because they are considering their future or just because they would like to see more of what we are and what we do– are warmly invited to attend.” Read...

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Canada: Ordinariate ‘instrument’ of unity

Dec 20, 2013 by

by Deborah Gyapong, Canadian Catholic News   OTTAWA – Former Anglicans who convert to Catholicism must be a bridge to Christian unity and a force for true ecumenism, said the leader of North America’s Anglican ordinariate as four former Anglican priests were ordained to the Catholic priesthood. “If the Ordinariate is to be anything worthy and worth keeping for the long term, it must be an instrument of Christian unity,” said Msgr. Jeffrey Steenson, head of the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter (POCSP). In a Dec. 14 ceremony in Ottawa’s Notre Dame Cathedral, Ottawa Archbishop Terrence Prendergast ordained Bryan Kipling Cooper, Douglas Hayman, both of Ottawa, John Hodgins of Toronto and James Tilley of Oshawa, Ont., to serve as priests in the Ordinariate. The POSCP, established Jan. 1, 2012, is based in Houston and encompasses the Ordinariate groups of the United States and Canada. It was the second of three Ordinariates created worldwide under Pope Benedict’s 2009 Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum Coetibus, which allowed Anglicans to become Catholic while preserving some elements of their tradition. With these four ordinations, it now has 53 clergy, but Steenson expects that number to grow to 60 in 2014. Pope Francis has approved former Anglican clergy in Edmonton and Vancouver and Steenson expects they will be ordained by Easter. He also hopes to have a priest ordained in Atlantic Canada next year, to bring the number of former Anglican priests in the Canadian deanery to 15. Read...

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Cranmer opens Ordinariate's liturgy

Oct 12, 2013 by

by James Roberts, The Tablet […]  The Ordinariate Use – drawn up, as Mgr Burnham said, in collaboration with the Vatican's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and the Congregation for Divine Worship, and fully approved by Rome – represents, according to the introduction to the Mass – "a small but concrete step towards the healing of one of the most damaging wounds of history, the dividing of Christ's Body, the Church, here in England." "We have found a way," Mgr Burnham said in his homily, "of joining together Cranmer's linguistic brilliance, and feel for translation, with the ancient Canon of the Mass, prayed everywhere in England from the time of St Augustine until the Reformation, that is, a thousand years." At a press conference later, he was asked about the gender make-up of the congregation. Women at the Mass were outnumbered by men by around four to one. He said he had noticed that congregations in C of E services these days were predominantly female, while Catholic congregations were pretty much evenly divided. He thought the preponderance of men at the Ordinariate service could possibly be explained by what he called the "feminisation" of the Church of England, but he hoped that in time numbers of women would equal those of men. Read...

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Ordinariate unveils Mass that draws on Cranmer

Oct 11, 2013 by

From Catholic Herald A new text for the Catholic Mass which integrates centuries old Anglican prayers into the Roman Rite was officially introduced in a London church on Thursday. The new liturgy, known as the Ordinariate Use, has been devised for the personal ordinariates – the structures set up by Benedict XVI to allow Anglicans to enter into full communion with the Pope, while preserving elements of their distinctive Anglican liturgical and pastoral traditions. The Mass, at the church of Our Lady of the Assumption and St Gregory, Warwick Street, was celebrated by the leader – or Ordinary – of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham, Monsignor Keith Newton. It was offered in honour of the patron of the Ordinariate, Blessed John Henry Newman, whose feast was on October 9. It began with words from the Church of England’s Book of Common Prayer, first unveiled by Archbishop Thomas Cranmer in 1549: “Almighty God, unto whom all hearts are open, all desires are known, and from whom no secrets are hid: Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love thee and worthily magnify thy holy Name.” Traditional elements of the Roman Rite, such as the Last Gospel and the preparatory Prayers at the Foot of the Altar, options within the Ordinariate Use, were also included. The sermon was preached by Monsignor Andrew Burnham, Assistant to the Ordinary and a member of the special working party set up by Rome which devised the new Use. Read...

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