October 22, 2009
ROME -- Long regarded as a hard-liner on religious doctrine, Pope Benedict XVI also is emerging as the pontiff of interchurch, or ecumenical, relations. The 82-year-old pope's decision Tuesday to amend Vatican laws to make it easier for Anglicans to become Roman Catholic represents his most aggressive attempt to bring more Christians into the Catholic fold. The pope's outreach to rival churches has spanned the conservative-liberal spectrum. He has bolstered dialogue with Lutherans and other mainline Protestants. He met with the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I of Constantinople, regarded by some as the spiritual leader of Eastern Orthodox Churches. And he lifted an excommunication ban on the highly conservative Catholic splinter group Society of St. Pius X...
Read the rest at The Wall Street Journal
And another article from the WSJ which I missed yesterday is:
Africa's Anglicans Weigh Vatican Offer
By WILL CONNORS
LAGOS, Nigeria -- The Vatican's invitation to Anglicans could have far-reaching repercussions across Africa, where about half of the world's 80 million Anglicans now live.
African clergymen have been some of the harshest critics of their Anglican colleagues in the West, whom they accuse of liberally interpreting the Bible. But it's far from clear whether churches here, many of which have already distanced themselves from Anglican churches in the U.S., Canada and England, would see the need to embrace the Vatican's offer.
Unlike the more tightly controlled Catholic Church, Anglican churches in Africa are largely autonomous, operating with a level of freedom that they wouldn't likely enjoy under Rome's fold.
Archbishop Peter Akinola, head of the Church of Nigeria, and the spiritual leader of Africa's 40 million Anglicans, is "still weighing the implications of the Vatican's offer" and is consulting with colleagues, according to an aide reached by telephone Wednesday...
Read the rest at WSJ.