Blessed John Paul, Pray…

I'm in Rome right now with a wonderful group of students from our parish school. What a joy it is to be with them — they have such a marvellous faith, and they're completely awestruck by everything they're experiencing. This morning we were at St. Peter's Basilica, and as we were going by the tomb of Blessed John Paul, they asked especially if we could stop for prayer there, so we did. As I knelt with them, I called to mind all those who are preparing to enter the Ordinariates, and especially the many of you whom I have met, or spoken with by phone.

Late this afternoon we celebrated Mass at the Basilica of St. Mary Major, and the Cardinal Archpriest greeted us beforehand. The students sang the Arcadelt "Ave Maria" for him, and he was visibly moved, commenting that he could tell by their singing that they had a deep love for the faith, and for the Blessed Mother. As I celebrated Mass in that wonderful place, once again I prayed for all those preparing to enter into full communion with the Holy See, asking the special prayers of the Virgin Mary for your intentions.

YouTube Preview Image

Author: Fr. Christopher Phillips

Fr. Christopher G. Phillips is the pastor of Our Lady of the Atonement Catholic Church in San Antonio, Texas, where he has served for the past twenty-eight years. He is the founding pastor of the first Anglican Use parish, erected in 1983 under the terms of the Pastoral Provision. Fr. Phillips was ordained as an Anglican for the Diocese of Bristol, England, in 1975. After serving as Curate for three years at St. Stephen Southmead, he returned to the United States and served in two Episcopal parishes in the Diocese of Rhode Island. In 1981 he left the Episcopal Church and moved with his family to Texas, where he was subsequently ordained as a Catholic priest in 1983. Fr. Phillips and his wife, JoAnn, have been married for forty years. They have five children, all grown and married, and three grandchildren.

22 thoughts on “Blessed John Paul, Pray…”

  1. Than you for posting the video clip Fr Christopher — the students sang with the love of Christ in their hearts.

    During your visit to Rome, please also pray for those priests who are at this moment in time receiving their rejection letters from the CDF. They would, I am certain, appreciate that your prayers are not just for those about to enter the Catholic Church, but also for them, who were willing to serve the Holy Father, and the Catholic Church, but have not been allowed this gift.

    1. I am aware of this situation that a few men have received rejection letters within the ACCC. I don't think I should comment why they have been rejected. The priests in the ACCC need your prayers, at this time. I am not commenting any further on this matter. Just be aware that it has happened and I am confirming this. In the next few weeks the situation will be completely apparent. This does not dull my hopes of entering the Ordinariate as a former Anglican.

    1. Rather than tempt our usual cadre of detractors and speculators, I would suggest this something that is neither our prerogative nor our concern.


      1. I agree, but it will be a concern for those of us in Canada, if a number of ACCC priests are not received. I have yet to hear of any receiving their nullae ostae within the ACCC. I am not trying to be negative on this and hope I will have more positive news to report in the days ahead. We do have concerns, because unlike the US, our numbers are quite smaller and, so far only two communities are on their way to reception in the Catholic Church. I am just commenting on the facts the way they stand, now, and the situation may be radically different in the next few weeks with more priests receiving the nullae ostae and more communities (many that are being prepared through the Evangelium Course) are earmarked for reception.

        1. I am aware of only four ACCC communities currently taking the Evangelium course: one each in BC and Alberta, two in Ontario. Do you know of others?

    2. I would add to ACP's wise counsel that we also need to look at the bright side. Although I know nothing of the ACCC, in the US many TAC priests, including the two of whom I am aware locally, have already received their nullae ostae. This includes Bishop Moyer, formerly of Good Shepherd Rosemont, as he has publicly announced on his community's new website. I'm sure that some rejections are to be expected as well. If there were nothing to review, there wouldn't be a review process. I also note that not all "rejections" should be seen as such. Many may only constitute temporary deferrals or situations that can be remedied with time and patience. I wish that I could say more, but I'm sure that this will become apparent in the coming weeks as well.

  2. Thank you for including us in your pilgrimage in this way. We give thanks, too, for the faith of the Church and for your demonstration of love for our Lord in the blessed places of ancient and recent memory. Humbly waiting for that gift of reunion in the Ordinariate, Fr. Phillips, and prayers with yours for all concerned. Peace to all and safe travels.

  3. Thank you for sharing this holy moment with us, especially the lovely singing of the students from Fr. Philips parish school.

      1. I have no knowledge of the situation in Nebraska
        with the TEC.

        I was incarnated in the TAC, Diocese of Missouri
        Valley on June 8, 2010. I am currently the interim
        at St. Francis of Assisi in Estes Park, Colorado.

        1. Ah? You are still in the TEC's diocese of Nebraska clergy list. Relatives of mine know you from your days in the diocese of Nebraska and your enthusiasm toward ARCIC and the unity of the Anglican Church with the see of Peter.

          1. This is interesting. Sometime ago, I came across a TEC-related blog where a gentleman was mocking the fact that his former Episcopal parish bulletin was still wishing him a happy birthday each year even though he had left the TEC several years prior. The resulting comments focused on how some TEC parishes are not removing former members’ names from their rosters to temper declining membership figures.

            1. LOL Catholic parishes losing members to the Anglican and Lutheran churches have been known to continue to ask for the prayers of those members who have been long gone.

              I once celebrated a liturgy at which our deacon read from "the dyptychs" the names of Catholics to be remembered in the canon. Upon hearing the names, I realized we had to update our records, or establish a new petition in the Prayer of the Faithful for "those who have left the Faith".

  4. Dear Father Phillips,

    The students were awesome in their singing, in their dress, and I need to ask…
    may I use them in my choir, for a couple of years? … Safe trip and thank you for your prayers. PAX +

      1. Say a prayer for us in Assisi please Father. The Toronto Group meets again this Sunday.

        Today is Remembrance Day in Canada when we recall those who have given their lives in the cause of freedom and peace.

        In the city of Francis and Clare remember us and all who gave their lives to liberate Italy — my uncle died at Ortona (the Italian Stalingrad) as Canadians liberated that city in December 1943.

        My wife and I spent a week in Assisi in 2009 and enjoyed the peace of that sacred place as we mingled with the pilgrims and stayed near Portuncula.

        Pax et bonum, Father. Praying for you on your journey.

  5. It is so wonderful — and unfortunately a bit surprising — to see that the Powers that Be deigned to give the Pope such a properly arranged altar; it seems almost revisionist. If only the book sitting on the pedestal to the Gospel side were the 1962 Missale Romanum!

Leave a Reply