A historic day in the Catholic Church — today Robert Mercer CR, one-time Bishop of Matabeleland and more recently Metropolitan of the Anglican Catholic Church of Canada, was received into the Roman Catholic Communion. Msgr Keith Newton, Ordinary of the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham celebrated and preached. Assisting were Fr Jonathan Redvers-Harris who leads the Group in Ryde on the Isle of Wight, together with Fr Anthony Glaishyer the parish Priest of St Mary's Ryde (in the Biretta above), and with them Fr Graham Smith from Poole (rt) and Fr Edwin Barnes (left) of the Bournemouth Group.
All this took place in the Church of St Agatha, Portsea, through the kindness of Fr Maunder of the Traditional Anglican Communion (TAC) who is a Trustee of St Agatha's and cares for the TAC congregation which worships there. Before his sermon Msgr Keith read out a letter of greeting from Bishop David Moyer who oversees the TAC groups in England. Bishop Moyer saw this day as a foretaste of what is to come, when many in the wider Anglican family are able to enter into Communion with the Catholic Church.
It was good that Bishop Mercer was supported by so many old friends, Catholic, Anglican and "Continuing". It was an immensely happy occasion, and the regulars of St Agatha's put on a great spread for the reception after Mass. The Rite used was that approved by the Catholic Church for Anglican Use parishes in the USA, the Book of Divine Worship (and permitted for use in the English Ordinariate), and the celebration was Eastward facing ('ad orientem').
A small choir led us in singing the Missa de Angelis and a good selection of Epiphany hymns, while the Propers were of the day, Saturday in Christmas time.
* * *
The Anglican Catholic Church in Canada (ACCC) is part of the Traditional Anglican Communion (TAC) and traces its origin to the Congress of St Louis.
If any of the information in this posting is inaccurate I would welcome corrections in the comments section. Thanks. EB