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

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Rome Rescues Anglo-Catholics. Who will Rescue Anglican's Evangelicals?

November 11, 2009
By David W. Virtue

[Pope Bendict XVI] By all accounts it was a brilliant move. The Vatican suddenly announced that a personal ordinariate would be made available to traditionalist Anglicans in the Anglican Communion, offering them a place of refuge and catching off guard the Archbishop of Canterbury. For the first time there is a sense in which Rome is recognizing that you can be Anglican and Roman Catholic.

It was a shrewd move that angered liberal Catholics like Hans Kung and threw into doubt the long standing history of Roman Catholic Anglican unity talks known as ARCIC. The ball game has changed forever. ARCIC may well be dead. At least that's the view of Rochester Bishop Michael Nazir-Ali. He may well be right.

The Church of England's toleration of gay clerics, ordained women and the future prospect of women bishops and The Episcopal Church's further and further drift from the historic Christian Faith while preferring to engage the culture by merging with it brought a sharp response from the Pontiff. Pope Benedict XVI moved quickly to stem the hemorrhaging of both Anglican churches. Rather than tolerating the excesses of the culture, he engaged it by condemning those things he saw as fatally flawed from a faith-based perspective.

Read the rest of David Virtue's analysis on Virtue Online.

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