Friday, 19 November 2010

An outbreak of realism? Perhaps...

The reality of the situation seems to be striking various actors in the drama unfolding in front of us. The Ordinariate will begin on a relatively small scale, but will gain momentum as the truth of the situation dawns on those at present reluctant to accept it. There will be no stampede and no panic; in fact, it's far better that there shouldn't be. A gradual process of disengagement (as provided for - and envisaged - by Anglicanorum Coetibus itself) seems most likely for sympathetic Anglo-Catholics unable to remain and continue the attempt to square the theological circle. Surely the welcome mat will be left out for as long as it is needed.

Update: The Catholic Bishops of England and Wales issued this statement today setting out the approximate timetable for the establishment of the Ordinariate. There are no surprises contained in it as far as I can see.
Here are links to the Ordinariate Portal and the Catholic Herald which are both running with the breaking news. No doubt comment from all quarters will be forthcoming.

And the 'Anglican crisis' is as far from being resolved as ever it has been.
No surprises there, given that those on opposing sides increasingly seem to believe in radically different deities; a 'common language' increasingly divides them - the words are the same, the meanings attached to them diverge wildly.
I feel most sorry - in some ways - for those theologically 'in the middle' and the wilfully unobservant who think things will stay very much the same. But, then, it's a misty morning and the streets here are thronged with old maids bicycling their way to Holy Communion.......

Here is a report of the Archbishop of Canterbury's latest interview in Rome. And here is Vatican Radio's Report with a audio link of the whole interview
And some widely reported comments from the Bishop of Beverley, an honourable man and admittedly in a very different situation to that of the southern flying bishops about whom he had some very warm things to say: 'Not yet, until it's clear the ship is really going down,' he seems to be saying.
I have resolutely no comment to make, only that the water has been lapping our ankles for a while now and shows no sign of receding. Perhaps we notice these things sooner down in third class.

Meanwhile, debate on the Anglican Covenant (a toothless tiger 'by design' if ever there was one) rumbles on and TEC's worshipper figures seem to confirm that the Anglican ship is indeed holed beneath the  waterline. This from the Church of England Newspaper:
"The Episcopal Church continues in its course of a steep decline in the wake of its divisions over doctrine and discipline, with the national office reporting that in 2009 average Sunday attendance (ASA) fell by three per cent to 682,963. As of the end of 2009, the Episcopal Church reported having 2,006,343 active members—at its peak in the 1960s the Church counted over 3.5 million members."

1 comment:

  1. Perhaps we notice these things sooner down in third class.

    You have a point there. I've often thought that some of the loopier ideas expressed by hierarchs, yours or ours or theirs, have a lot to do with the unreality of endless meetings and champagne canape receptions.


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