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 18, 2009

Comment: The genesis of the Anglican Ordinariate

Tuesday, 17th November 2009. 12:55pm
By: Ruth Gledhill

When it became clear, despite denials from some in Rome and London, that the Anglican Roman Catholic International Commission was dead, a new body, the International Anglican Roman Catholic Commission for Unity and Mission was set up.

Two years ago, its first report, Growing Together, came out. In the light of what has happened now, I've been re-reading the Church Society analysis, and it is fascinating. Is it fanciful to suggest that the Apostolic Constitution and Anglican Ordinariate were prefigured here in the IARCCUM report in some respects?

In their paper of the time, the Church Society wrote: “It appears that the report was leaked and Ruth Gledhill reported in The Times that Anglicans were preparing to accept the primacy of the pope. This is a typical piece of over-reporting since even amongst liberals there are still major problems with the papacy but the report does make grim reading. As a result of the news stories the full report has been released.

“The goal of the enterprise is reiterated as the ‘restoration of visible unity and full ecclesial communion’. This is a laudable goal, but it cannot stand on its own. The only way we could have such union and communion is on the basis of the mutual acceptance of the full authority of Holy Scripture and that the Church cannot ordain things contrary to Scripture (Article 20). Thus to achieve true unity Rome would have to abandon its errors and pretensions.”

When the text of the constitution was published this week, a usually reliable source told me that ARCIC had initially been seen as going somewhere...

Read the rest on Religious Intelligence.

Hat tip to Christian Campbell of "The Anglo-Catholic" blog.

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