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

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Anglican Ordinariate Established for North America

Wonderful news for all Christians in Canada and the USA January 1, 2012

Fr Jeffrey Steenson, formerly Episcopal (Anglican) Bishop of the Diocese of Rio Grande (New Mexico and NW Texas), has been appointed as of January 1, 2012 Ordinary or chief pastor for the Anglican Ordinariate of The Chair of St. Peter. The Ordinariate is a body in full communion with the Holy See and so in communion with more than one billion Roman and Eastern Catholic Christians around the world, the largest unified religious body on earth. This is indeed an answer to the prayers of many for whom the unity of the Church is essential.

The Ordinariate is erected in the United States but will apparently have oversight for Canadian groups as well so is effectively a continent-wide diocese for Catholic Anglicans in the United States and Canada allowing them to bring their Anglican heritage or patrimony into the full communion of the worldwide Catholic Church under the guidance of their own ordinary or chief pastor, Msgr. Steenson.

Like the Ordinary for the United Kingdom, Monsignor Keith Newton, who has authority for reconciled Anglicans in England, Scotland and Wales since last year, Fr. Steenson is a married Catholic priest and former Anglican bishop who will act in every jurisdictional way as a bishop save only for ordaining. Fr. Steenson will preside at the liturgy in episcopal mitre and vestments by the respectful provision of Pope Benedict XVI thus recognizing his previous ministry as an Anglican bishop...

Read the rest at the Peregrinations blog.

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