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

Monday, January 18, 2010

A Good Experience With a Bishop

Lest we become discouraged with the accounts of obstructive bishops and their bad behaviour, I’d like to report a good experience.

I received a call last Thursday, and the voice at the other end said, “I’m calling from the archbishop’s office. He would like to arrange a time when you can meet him in his office.” I did a quick mental inventory, and there wasn’t anything I could think of that could possibly give reason for anxiety – one tends to do that when a call comes from diocesan headquarters. I asked if the archbishop had a time in mind. “Yes,” was the answer, “tomorrow afternoon at 3:30.” It seemed awfully quick, so I did the inventory again. Nothing.

It was a rainy day this past Friday, so I allowed myself plenty of time to get to the chancery. Too much time, in fact. I was thirty minutes early, so I slipped into the chapel to spend a bit of time with our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament, just for a little reassurance.

The appointed time arrived, and the archbishop greeted me with a smile and invited me to sit down. It was a good sign – no desk between us, but instead we were in comfortable chairs. “I thought we should talk a little about what the Apostolic Constitution is going to mean for us,” he said.

Then we had a very good conversation...

Read the rest of Fr. Phillips' account on The Anglo-Catholic blog.

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