Sunday, April 24, 2011

Thoughts on the Ordinariate.

 You may have noticed that I include a number of links to sites relating to the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham under the joint patronage of Blessed Henry Newman, set up by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith on the 15th January for those Anglicans in England and  Wales wishing to be received into full communion with the Catholic Church as a group retaining aspects of the Anglican Patrimony in respect of the Apostolic Constitution 'Anglicanorum coetibus' issued by Pope Benedict XVI on 4th November 2009.

This is a comment I made on the Tunbridge Wells Ordinariate Blog some time ago that explains my interest.  I was an Anglican ordinand when I decided to swim the Tiber myself in 1969.

I’ve been following the whole Ordinariate journey fascinating and this blog particularly so, probably because I have a vicarious interest in St Barnabas, Tunbridge Wells as my mother attended the school with her brothers and sisters before the war and my grandmother and great grandparents were members of the congregation.
Anglo-catholic churches of this type tend to be hot houses of an antique “catholicism” that harks back to the Anglo-catholic Congress days of the 20′s and 30′s with a huge emphasis on what we do and what we wear when doing it. I don’t really believe that it is sustainable in the long term whether in or out of the Ordinariate.
I’m sure that many people making the move will find that being a Catholic is very different from being an Anglo-catholic because the goal posts have moved.  Your identity is not so marked by what you do as by a Catholic spirituality and a general consensus of what being a Catholic means rather than trying to gauge how far up the candle the celebrant is.  Some people will understand this and find it liberating, spiritually. Others won’t. Quite apart from anything else the Catholic congregational ethos is very different and some will find this welcoming and refreshing and others will prefer the AC ghetto.
I haven't really changed my opinions since I wrote this as I occasionally get a hint of "ordinariate arrogance" coming through on the blog.  I hope I am wrong but I think that there is a preference for an archaic Anglo-catholic liturgical approach that is manifested by the search for fiddle back High Mass sets......we will see!

Canada, the United States and Australia will also gain Ordinariates in due course but here, in South Africa, there is no such movement.  Possibly because we do not have the extremes of Anglo-catholicism in this country.

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