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, November 4, 2014


Yesterday evening (Sunday, 02 November 2014) The Fellowship of the Blessed John Henry Newman ( was received as a group into the Anglican Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter ( established by the Constitution “Anglicanorum Coetibus,” issued by Pope Benedict xvi, and became an official parish of the Ordinariate, at Our Lady of the Assumption Catholic Church in Wayne, PA (

David L. Moyer, formerly the rector of the Episcopalian parish, The Church of The Good Shepherd, and pastor to the Fellowship during its period of discernment, presented the parishioners to the Rev. David Ousley, who received the group on behalf of Msgr. Jeffrey Steenson, the Ordinary. The formal reception into communion took place during a Solemn High Mass celebrated by Fr. Ousley using the Anglican form of worship approved by the Holy See for use in the Ordinariate. The service was followed by a reception hosted in the Assumption Parish Building by the congregation of the Church of St. Michael the Archangel (, for which Fr. Ousley is Pastor.

Approximately forty families left The Church of The Good Shepherd to follow Moyer when the Episcopal Church deposed him as Rector. Thirty of these have now entered communion with the See of St. Peter through the Ordinariate. Some families were already Catholic, and others have entered communion with the See of St. Peter through their local Roman Catholic parishes.

The Ordinariate was established by Pope Benedict xvi to allow groups of Anglicans to enter communion with the Holy See as corporate bodies, while retaining their married clergy and Anglican forms of worship. The Newman Fellowship joins the 35 other parishes of the Ordinariate, for which the Church of Our Lady of Walsingham in Houston ( is the mother church and the seat of the Ordinary. Father Ousley, Pastor of the Church of St. Michael the Archangel in Philadelphia, is interim Pastor for the Newman Fellowship, as well as for the Church of St. Michael the Archangel, the two parishes of the Ordinariate in the Philadelphia area. The Newman Fellowship has its temporary home at the Church of Our Lady of the Assumption.

Hat tip to Mary Ann Mueller.

1 comment:

  1. When I wrote this piece, I was in error in stating that the Newman Fellowship had become a parish of the Ordinatiate. It has not. The Newman Fellowship has entered the Ordinariate and is in full communion with the See of St. Peter, and is in the process of canonical formation to become an official group of the Ordinariate, and, eventually, a parish.