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

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Ordinariate Life: Some Parallels from the Experience of Exempt Religious

August 2, 2010
by Br. Stephen Treat, O.Cist

The choir of the Cistercian Abbey of Hauterive, which should look comfortingly familiar to any Anglican.

There has been much discussion of the nature of the relationship between the ordinariates created by Anglicanorum Coetibus and the local diocese. Some considering the Apostolic Constitution are afraid that they will be absorbed. Others worry about the potential indifference or even hostility of the local bishop. I thought it might be useful to speak a little bit about the experience of a house of exempt religious living within a diocese. I think the parallels between the two situations may help to put some people’s minds more at ease and help others to see that the arrangements in the Apostolic Constitution draw on firmly established precedent in a way that allows the structures of an ordinariate and a diocese to complement one another...

Read the rest of Brother Stephen's excellent description of a Catholic community that is united yet distinct from the general Latin Church at the blog The Anglo-Catholic.

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