The first principle of the Ordinariate is then about Christian unity. St. Basil the Great, the Church’s greatest ecumenist, literally expended his life on the work of building bridges between orthodox brethren who shared a common faith, but who had become separated from one another in a Church badly fragmented by heresy and controversy. He taught that the work of Christian unity requires deliberate and ceaseless effort...St. Basil often talked with yearning about the archaia agape, the ancient love of the apostolic community, so rarely seen in the Church of his day. This love, he taught, is a visible sign that the Holy Spirit is indeed present and active, and it is absolutely essential for the health of the Church.

- Msgr. Jeffrey Steenson, Homily on the Occasion of his Formal Institution as Ordinary

Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Anglican Anschluss?

Father Zuhlsdorf, on his blog "What Does the Prayer Really Say?", comments on a pair of articles from the London Times, one of which I've already linked to below. While many of the comments are simply questions, or speculation by folks who really don't have sufficient background to comment knowledgably, one of the comments, by Father Mark Woodruff at 4:55 is well worth reading.

Fr. Mark begins by writing:
In the early 1990s a discussion took place between representatives of Cardinal Hume and those of an organised and historic group of pro-Catholic Anglicans. Not to be confused with the more recently founded North American organisation of the same name, the Catholic League had been established in 1913 (a) to pick up some of the pieces after Apostolicae Curae and promote again the cause of corporate reunion; (b) to promote the Church Unity Octave (later aka the Chair of Unity Octave and now the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity); and (c) in the wake of the 1910 Edinburgh Missionary Conference of Reformed, Protestant and Anglican church leaders trying to overcome the scandal of rivalry in evangelisation, tp assert that there could not be a Christian unity worthy of the name unless it involved the whole Church – including unity with the Apostolic See of Rome.

In the early 1990s, this group, foreseeing that changes to Anglican church order would irrevocably undo the assumption behind ARCIC and the Decree on Ecumenism that a corporate rapprochement between Anglicans and the Catholic Church, developed a proposed scheme for the corporate reception of Anglicans under a structure based on the Canon Law concerning personal prelatures. The working title was ‘The Congregation of the English Mission’. The discussions were searching and took the possibility seriously...

To read the rest, along with other comments and Fr. Z's own notes on the articles, visit "What Does the Prayer Really Say?".

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