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

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Cardinal Seán O'Malley's blog on the Apostoloic Constitution

Seán Cardinal O'Malley, Archbishop of Boston, produces a weekly blog, which goes out by email to anyone who wants to sign up. He begins his email this week with a discussion of the initiative of the Holy Father in response to requests by Anglicans for reception into the Church.
Greetings to you all.
Before I begin with the events of my week, I want to briefly comment on the news that the Holy Father is going to issue an Apostolic Constitution in order to accommodate Anglicans who wish to join the Church, and at the same time, preserve some of their Anglican traditions.
In the years immediately following the Second Vatican Council there was a great optimism about the possibility of the Anglican Church being reunited with the Roman Catholic Church. I had many Anglican friends who were very positive and very hopeful about this...
I know people are saying that this threatens the practice of celibacy in the Catholic Church. But, I look at it as being actually a better solution than the one that we have had — particularly in England — where scores of Anglican priests have been ordained as Catholic priests. This resulted in presbyterates wherein you have both married and celibate clergy. I think that was a much greater challenge than the current decision that will establish a separate jurisdiction for the Anglican priests who would become Catholic priests....

To read the rest go to the Cardinal Seán's blog.

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