Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Five Myths about the Pope’s Anglican Ordinariates

On October 20, 2009, the Holy See made an unexpected announcement: the Holy Father will be issuing an Apostolic Constitution (the highest form of papal document) through which he will erect personal ordinariates for Anglican clergy and laity wishing to enter the Catholic Church. While rumors about this have been stirring since 2007, the recent decision came as a surprise to most Catholics and Anglicans.
Taylor Marshall at Catholic Online has written a fantastic analysis, dispelling 5 myths about the Vatican's move.

Myth #1 The Pope is sheep-stealing

The Pope’s alleged “sheep-stealing” been the most popular subject within
the secular media. To them, the Holy Father has launched a media campaign to
kick the Anglican Communion while it’s down. The poor Archbishop of Canterbury
is struggling to keep things together and then “Bamm!” the Pope surprises
everyone with a bid for Anglican souls. However, we must remember that it was
Anglicans who pursued the matter with the Holy Father—and we’re not talking
about just one or two Anglicans. We are talking about thousands and thousands of
Anglicans: bishops, priests, deacons, and laity. Anglican bishops from several
nations have sent private letters to the Holy See. Much of this is confidential.
They want a way out. They want to become Catholic. The Pope is responding to
souls looking to him for guidance. The pope is not stealing sheep—He is holding
out his pastoral staff to those sheep looking for protection.

Myth #2 Rome is preparing the world for a general married

The media also sunk its teeth into the fact that the new Anglican
ordinariates would preserve the already recognized discipline of allowing
married former-Anglican priests to be ordained as married Catholic priests. This
is nothing new.

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