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, February 4, 2009

Mt. Vernon parish welcomes married priest

MOUNT VERNON — The new priest at Mount Vernon’s Immaculate Conception Catholic Church brings something that no priest in the diocese has had before — a wife. The Rev. Tom McMichael’s Jan. 10 ordination marked a historical moment for the region as he became the first married man ordained within the Archdiocese of Seattle. McMichael and his wife, Karin, have two sons in college, ages 19 and 23. McMichael was immediately assigned to pastor at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Mount Vernon and Church of the Assumption in Bellingham. According to the Archdiocese of Seattle, there are more than 41,000 priests in the United States, of which about 100 are married following a 1980 rule that allows Protestant married pastors to become ordained within the Catholic Church...
Read in full at the Skagit Valley Herald.

Nota Bene: This is a companion article to the entry from January 21, 2009 that appeared in the Seattle Times.

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