…and the Ordinary will be named at that time. Thanks be to God.
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…and the Ordinary will be named at that time. Thanks be to God.
UPDATE #2: Rocco Palmo writes "Cardinal Donald Wuerl is slated to give the most definitive update yet on the Stateside implementation of Anglicanorum coetibus at around 2pm Eastern today." The time given to me originally was 3:25pm, and that's what it looked like on the agenda. However, it appears that those interested in watching the live-stream will have to keep an eye on the proceedings starting after the lunch break.
UPDATE: For those who are interested, here is the link for the full agenda of the Bishops' meeting. As you can see, Cardinal Wuerl's report on Anglicanorum coetibus appears to be the final item on Tuesday, wedged between an action item from the Committee on National Collections and a coffee break. I'm just guessing, but that doesn't appear to be the setting for a major announcement.
The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) will have its Fall General Assembly in Baltimore on November 14-16.
Among the many topics being discussed, there will be a report on the U. S. Ordinariate — the USCCB website calls it "…an update by Cardinal Donald W. Wuerl of Washington on the process of incorporating Anglican groups into the U.S. Catholic Church under Pope Benedict XVI's 2009 apostolic constitution 'Anglicanorum coetibus.'"
When I asked Fr. Scott Hurd in an email if there would be something newsworthy in the Cardinal's comments, he responded, "I think that all interested parties will wish to tune in!"
From Catholic Online:
"Our celebration today is a realization that we are God's family, God's people, the beginning of his kingdom, his Church. And we rejoice in the outpouring of the Spirit in the sacraments of initiation. At the same time, we commit ourselves to live out that blessing in the full communion of the Church." Donald Cardinal Wuerl, Archbishop of Washington, on receiving the people of St. Luke's, Bladensburg, into full Catholic communion
WASHINGTON, DC (Catholic Online) – On Sunday morning, October 9, almost 80 parishioners of St. Luke's Episcopal Church, Bladensburg, Maryland were received into full communion with the Catholic Church by Donald Cardinal Wuerl, Archbishop of Washington during Mass at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception.
St. Luke's parish is a small, tight-knit congregation with a majority of their members from Africa and the Caribbean. While enjoying a rich cultural diversity, the church has been unified in it's one dream – becoming a part of the new Anglican Ordinariate as Catholics in full-communion with the Church.
Cardinal Wuerl was visibly joyful throughout the confirmation Mass and expressed his personal delight, during his homily, in receiving these faithful pilgrims. [His prepared remarks are available in a separate article.]
The cardinal spoke of the increasing momentum toward unity in the Church since Vatican II, with the Anglican Ordinariate the most recent response to those who desire to enter in.
"In recent years," he stated, "there have been communities in the Anglican Communion who said, 'we're ready!'
"Pope Benedict XVI, hearing that call, said 'Why do we not prepare a vehicle to allow this corporate reunion to take place?'
The Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum coetibus became that vehicle, as a way for the Church to receive individuals and parishes that desire to enter into full-communion. They have also been invited to bring their rich Anglican heritage with them.
The Cardinal stated that the St. Luke Community eagerly anticipated the announcement of the Ordinariate in America and their establishment as a Catholic Parish with the ordination of their pastor. He also said they approached him about moving forward.
"They asked, 'Rather than wait; why can't we just start now?' In God's good time the Holy See will announce the Ordinariate."
Today's Rite of Reception was the culmination of their preparation.
Members of what is now the Saint Luke Ordinariate Catholic Community then went forward individually to receive the Sacred Chrism from the Cardinal during the time of confirmation, returning to their pews with smiles and tear of joy.
After the Mass I was able to speak with their former pastor, Mark Lewis, who said that what he was experiencing could only be described as "more than pure joy."
"I had high expectations about coming into the Church and all my expectations were exceeded. I thank God for what He is doing in our lives. There is a real sense of coming home."
His joy was especially directed toward his parishioners who joined him in confirmation or, for former Catholics, renewing their commitment. After the Mass, many of them immediately walked over to their shepherd, exchanging hugs and words of congratulations. It was a sight that would be repeated often during the reception that followed.
Lewis' wife, Vickey, echoed her husband's joy and delight in celebrating the work God is doing among them. She chatted with me between hugs and words of encouragement from those who had known her for so many years as their pastor's wife.
For clergy, a day like today is especially poignant. One surrenders his faculties for ministry and entrusts his people to the care of others, even if it is just for a time. For many in Mark Lewis' parish, seeing their rector in a coat and tie, without clerics, took a bit of adjustment.
Their support for Mark Lewis' future ministry among them, however, was obvious in word and conversation. While his new priestly ministry is yet to be formed by Holy Mother Church, he is still their shepherd.
Father Scott Hurd was the group's confirmation sponsor. He serves in the Archdiocese of Washington as the Executive Director for the Office of the Permanent Diaconate and serves as Cardinal Wuerl's liaison with the USCCB for the implementation of the Anglican Ordinariate in America.
Father Hurd has been working closely with the parish since their declaration of desire to entire into full communion.
Following the Mass, he said, "This was a great day; I know they are so excited to be taking this step. I'm looking forward to getting to know each of them better."
He will now serve as Chaplain for the newly formed St. Luke Community while day to day community life will be lead by their former pastor, Mark Lewis, as lay administrator.
Once the Ordinariate is announced a new parish will be formed from the community and Lewis will be ordained as a priest, serving once again as their pastor.
St. Luke's has long been known as a strong Anglo-Catholic parish in the mid-Atlantic area. Growing out of momentum of 17th Century Anglicanism in the region, the parish was officially established in 1856.
While the parish struggled over the years and even closed a few times, they became a major Anglo-Catholic presence through the leadership of their pastor, Father Arnold, in the 50's and 60's. In 2006, Father Mark Lewis accepted the call as Rector. Under his leadership the spiritual life continued to flourish while many improvements to the facilities were also initiated.
The parish made headlines earlier this year when, on June 6, 2011 in a Joint Public Statement with the Catholic Archdiocese of Washington and the Episcopal Diocese of Washington, St. Luke's announced its intention to enter the Personal Ordinariate established by Pope Benedict XVI in the apostolic constitution Anglicanorum coetibus.
Just two weeks ago another parish, the first of the Community of St. Peter the Rock were also received as members of the future Anglican Ordinariate. The Rite of Reception and Confirmation took place at St. Patrick's Cathedral in Fort Worth by Bishop Kevin Vann on September 25.
This article was written by Randy Sly, who is the Associate Editor of Catholic Online and the CEO/Associate Publisher for the Northern Virginia Local Edition of Catholic Online (http://virginia.catholic.org). He is a former Archbishop of the Charismatic Episcopal Church who laid aside that ministry to enter into the full communion of the Catholic Church.
This video has Cardinal Wuerl's report, and also questions asked by various bishops, with the Cardinal's responses.
Consultation on Implementation of Anglicanorum coetibus
United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
June 15, 2011
Anglicanorum coetibus, an Apostolic Constitution which provides for groups of Anglicans to enter into corporate union with the Catholic Church, was issued by our Holy Father in November 2009. Specifically, Anglicanorum coetibus allows for the erection of Personal Ordinariates, juridically similar to dioceses, in which elements of the Anglican heritage may be maintained.
In early 2010, Cardinal Francis George, then President of our Conference, established the USCCB’s Ad Hoc Committee for the Implementation of Anglicanorum coetibus in the United States. Bishop Robert McManus of Worcester, Bishop Kevin Vann of Fort Worth and myself are members of this Committee which I Chair.
On March 23, 2010, I gave a report to the USCCB Administrative Committee. In the context of that report, I attempted to answer questions and also solicited the observations of the bishops on establishing an Ordinariate in the United States. Subsequent to the meeting, the bishops’ responses were compiled in a report, which also included observations by USCCB Senior Staff. This report was most helpful in conveying the mind of the USCCB at meetings in Rome on Anglicanorum coetibus, directed by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith from April 26 through April 28, 2010.
The Ad Hoc Committee met in Florida during the USCCB’s June meeting. We were joined by Father Scott Hurd, a priest of the Archdiocese of Washington who was ordained through the Pastoral Provision. At this meeting, it was decided that the responsibilities of the Committee are two-fold: 1) assess the level of interest in such an Ordinariate in the United States and thus provide appropriate information for both our Conference and the Holy See; and 2) facilitate the implementation of Anglicanorum coetibus in the United States.
On August 22, 2010, Father Hurd was appointed as liaison with the USCCB for the implementation of Anglicanorum coetibus. In this capacity, he serves as staff to the Ad Hoc Committee.
The USCCB made a public announcement in September 2010 of my appointment as the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith’s Delegate for the implementation of Anglicanorum coetibus in the United States. In the official press release, Anglicans wishing to be received into the Catholic Church were invited to express their intentions to me in writing by December 31, 2010.
Since that time, every Anglican group and individual who has written has received an acknowledgement of their statement of intention. Anglican groups were sent a “Community Profile” questionnaire, based upon established criteria for assessing Anglican communities. Anglican clergy not associated with a larger group were sent a “Clergy Profile” questionnaire. Finally, Anglican laity not associated with a larger group were sent an acknowledgement to their letter, instructing them to await further instructions, should an Ordinariate be established.
Personal contacts were also made with interested Anglicans during this time, both by members of the Ad Hoc Committee and by Father Hurd, who is in frequent contact with interested Anglicans by telephone, e-mail, and Facebook.
In January 2011, an overview and summary of the responses received from interested Anglicans was sent to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. A modified version of this report was submitted to the USCCB President, Archbishop Timothy Dolan, who in turn shared it with all members of the Conference. Both reports concluded with the assessment that it appears feasible to establish an Ordinariate in the United States at this time.
Shortly thereafter, an extensive assessment of those Anglican communities intending to enter an Ordinariate was compiled and sent to the CDF. This assessment was referenced in my report on Anglicanorum coetibus to the USCCB Administrative Committee on March 22, 2011. In this report, I explained that all bishops with an Anglican group in their jurisdiction requesting to be received into an Ordinariate would be invited to submit by May 1 any information they wished to share with the Ad Hoc Committee. Many bishops accepted this invitation and provided helpful information.
An analysis of the academic and ministerial formation history of all petitioning Anglican clergy was submitted to the CDF at the beginning of April. This was done to evaluate their formation needs for Catholic ordination. This analysis proposed that petitioning Anglican clergy be placed into one of three categories: those eligible for an intense period of formation; those eligible for the intense period plus an additional period of mandated continuing formation after ordination; and those whose formation histories would not recommend them for either of these options.
In planning for the implementation of Anglicanorum coetibus, a program of priestly formation was developed that would allow for a concentration of study in the areas of historic theological divergence in anticipation of ordination to the priesthood. The CDF approved the modified program of priestly formation and authorized its use.
With the encouragement of Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, the leadership of the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston’s Major Seminary, Saint Mary’s, agreed to implement the priestly formation program. A Saint Mary’s faculty member, Father Jeffrey Steenson, has been instrumental in designing the specific elements of this program, in collaboration with Cardinal DiNardo and myself. Father Steenson is the former Episcopal Bishop of the Rio Grande, who was received into the Church in 2007. The formation program will be available on site at the seminary and also through distance learning facilities.
In mid-April, Anglican clergy seeking ordination in an Ordinariate were directed as part of the process to submit dossiers to me by May 16 for eventual review by the CDF. Since that time, completed dossiers have been sent to Rome for evaluation.
Those Anglican clergy whose dossiers are granted a Nulla Osta by the CDF, indicating that they are eligible to proceed with the approved priestly formation process, will be directed to provide additional information to the CDF. This information will include the results of criminal background checks, a psychological evaluation, a letter of resignation from their Anglican entity, a Votum from the Delegate or Ordinary, and a Votum from the Catholic bishop where the candidate resides, who will have been invited to interview him, either personally or through a delegate. If possible, a Votum from the candidate’s former Anglican authority will also be included.
During this time, those candidates responsible for a congregation will be guiding the catechetical formation of their people, utilizing the United States Catholic Catechism for Adults, as has been approved by the CDF. Candidates will be encouraged to invite speakers from the local Catholic community.
Once the second set of documentation has been sent to the CDF, a candidate will cease celebrating the Anglican Eucharist. When a rescript has been issued and received, he may be ordained to the diaconate immediately, with the intention that his subsequent priestly ordination would coincide with the reception of his parish group into full communion.
Since the Holy See has indicated its wish to establish an Ordinariate in the United States this Fall, I am grateful for this opportunity to conduct this consultation with the members of our Conference, to receive any additional observations you might have and to indicate a few areas where we as bishops can be of assistance to a newly-appointed ordinary as he attempts to implement an Ordinariate in the United States.
Before inviting your observations and, I hope, support for this effort, I would like to touch on a number of areas where individually we as bishops can be of assistance to a newly formed Ordinariate and its efforts to review possible candidates for priestly ordination.
Since each candidate will be required to have a criminal background check and a psychological evaluation, I would hope that each of us would be able to provide these services for a candidate for the Ordinariate just as we do for those who are seeking admission in our priestly formation programs or to minister in a diocesan program.
A second area where we can perhaps be of some assistance is to offer worship space to a small community that would be a part of the new Ordinariate. Most of them will not have property such as a church and meeting facilities. Our hospitality in providing them worship space would be a sign of generosity on our part and, I am sure, greatly welcomed by them.
An additional way we can facilitate the work of the Ordinariate would be to assign priests who would function as a bishop’s delegate. These delegates would meet and interview candidates for priesthood ordination and, perhaps, serve as a mentor to assist with any issues that arise in the formation process.
Fourth, I suggest that we make available the resources of our Tribunals to those Anglicans, both clergy and lay, who will need to secure an annulment before being received into an Ordinariate.
Another area where collaboration at the local level could be helpful is in the catechetical preparation of the lay faithful of the former Anglican congregation. While this is the responsibility of the Ordinariate, and specifically the head of the congregation seeking membership in the Ordinariate, perhaps someone involved in catechesis in the neighboring Catholic parish (Director of Religious Education, Coordinator of Religious Education or a senior catechist) might be willing to assist in the catechetical process for those lay faithful coming into the Ordinariate and making their profession of faith as a Catholic.
It might also be helpful to note that the establishment of an Ordinariate and the process for the Pastoral Provision are two distinct responses. The Ordinariate deals with those seeking to come into the Catholic Church as a group. The Pastoral Provision is intended for an individual seeking ordination as a Catholic priest.
Finally, as this consultation unfolds, I welcome your input, observations and comments.
The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) Spring General Assembly is taking place in Seattle, and one of the topics will be the implementation of Anglicanorum coetibus. His Eminence, Donald Cardinal Wuerl, will be presenting his report to the bishops. At this point we do not know exactly what time the Cardinal will be speaking, but live streaming will begin at 12 noon (Eastern)/9 a.m. (Pacific) and you can access it here or here.
Through a silly miscommunication, a married couple that I know once found themselves with two overlapping plans on their schedules. They had assumed that the other knew what was being referred to in their discussions and both had the idea that they were speaking about the same event, so both filled in the schedule with something different. One of the appointments had to be cancelled for the sake of the other and it was not an easy decision. Expectations will make us behave in a certain way, and if we assume that others have the same expectations that we do, it is a big surprise when we find ourselves staring at one another with that look of "oops".
When make an assumption about something in the future, we usually tend to "over-assume"; meaning that we insert that assumed reality into our bigger picture of the world. When we do this, it leads to deep shock if we find out that we are wrong. It would be comparable to finding out that Copernicus was wrong and that the Sun really does orbit the Earth! When our view of the world takes a hit, our spirit takes a hit along with it. God often reveals to us what is coming in the future, He just does not reveal how that is going to happen. This means that (even though He discourages it) we fill in the gaps with our own preconceived notions. The problem arises when those notions turn out to be wrong. God always knows the better way to do things, and when we sit and wait, and wait, and wait our brains end up assuming that God is going to do exactly what we think is best. When this happens we are only acting like we do not believe that He knows how to do things better than we do.
Once, when Jesus had told the Apostles about His coming suffering at the hands of the Jews, Peter "took him, and began to rebuke him" (Mark 8:32) for saying such a thing. Jesus' response is a stinging rebuke, and it comes because Peter's expectations, though noble, were not what God had chosen as the best course of action. Peter could not, at the time, imagine Jesus ever having to suffer at the hands of wicked men, for his concept of victory was limited to big "grandstand" types of accomplishments. God, however, has often chosen victories that are not what we expect. The initial feeling of being crushed will fade when we realize that His ways are always better than our ways, but that does not mean that we always make the best choices or say the best things while we are still feeling crushed.
There may be some announcements made in the near future that will disappoint some who are currently waiting (with excited anticipation) for the Ordinariate to be established here in America. It is public information that Cardinal Wuerl is giving a report about the Ordinariate at the USCCB meeting this week, and there is hope that some type of announcement will come after that. It may be that the announcement does not come until later, but even if it does come then, some may be disappointed. Some who expect to be ordained quickly may be told that they have to be patient and wait a while longer. Others who expect a certain aspect of the "Anglican Patrimony" to remain in the Ordinariate may be surprised that they have to give up something that they assumed was theirs to keep. Another might find that he has to spend time resolving certain personal impediments that he thought were all in the past.
When our expectations are revealed to be in error, we often follow the well known habit: "open mouth, insert foot". We say something foolish, and get ourselves in the disfavor of others. Someone once said "conclusions that are ready at hand are fine, but many are across a chasm and when we jump to them, we fall short and end up in the abyss". It is safer to keep our "expectations" as "petitions" before the Lord, and not as "assumptions" set in eternity. Sometimes things seem perfectly logical to us, and we cannot imagine that there is any other way for them to be, but that is because we do not perfectly know the mind of God. He Who knows the beginning from the end, and all things in between, knows what is best for those of us who are awaiting our entrance into communion with the Holy See. We can trust Christ, even if the structures put up by His servants does not appear to be the way we think it is best.
Having been through many and various trials in life, I have seen that Jesus' solutions are not always what I prayed for. Yet, they were always better than I could have imagined. He is, after all, the One Who can do "exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think" (Eph 3:20), because He has our good in mind (whereas we usually have only our desires in mind). What will the announcement look like when it does come for the establishment of an Ordinariate here in the USA (or any other country)? What will the details be of its organization? Who will be the chosen Ordinary? When will each of us be received in? Although someone likely has the answers to these questions (at least most of them) those of us who do not should not be fretting about it.
The Evil One is clever, and thus able to distract our eyes away from serving and loving God with our whole heart, soul, mind, and body. Satan definitely would be pleased if in our anticipation and expectations of what is coming we were led away from simple faithfulness. He wants clergy to neglect their ministry because they are distracted; he wants husbands and wives to neglect each other because they are spending hours trying to fix everyone else on the Internet; he wants employees to make their employers upset because their minds are "elsewhere"; he wants each person in the pew to forget their calling in the "here and now" for the sake of their expectations in the "there and then". Let us work hard to disappoint him.
We are called to simple faithfulness in every aspect of life, on every day of the week, regardless of what is around the corner. When we get excited about upcoming events we tend to forget what our primary responsibilities are before us in the here and now. In these days, let us pray for one another, and not allow anything to take us away from obedience and faith. Stand fast and know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain; and remember that the Ordinariate is not about us, it is about Jesus and His glory.
Fr. Hurd was kind enough to comment on the post about the meeting of Cardinal Wuerl and Bishop Moyer. I want to make sure everyone sees what he has written, and so am posting it here:
Much speculation has been made, here and elsewhere, to the effect that the implementation of an Ordinariate in the US is happening slowly, or that somehow the US bishops are seeking to delay or prevent an Ordinariate from being established in the first place. It might be good for everyone to reflect on the possibility that it is Rome who is responsible for the timetable of the unfolding of events here in the US, and that the USCCB and the CDF are operating in complete collaboration on this.
In the meantine, I would encourage everyone to watch Cardinal Wuerl's major report on US developments at the June USCCB General Assembly in Seattle.
Yours in Christ,
Rev. Scott Hurd
USCCB Liaison for the Implementation of Anglicanorum coetibus
In response to an invitation by His Eminence, Donald Cardinal Wuerl (Delegate of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith for the Implementation of Anglicanorum coetibus in the United States, and Chairman of the USCCB Ad Hoc Committee for the Implementation of Anglicanorum coetibus), Bishop David Moyer (A.C.A. Bishop in charge of the Patrimony of the Primate) was received by Cardinal Wuerl this afternoon in Washington, D.C. The meeting between Cardinal Wuerl and Bishop Moyer also was attended by Fr. Scott Hurd.
Cardinal Wuerl stated that he will be making a major presentation to the USCCB this coming June in Seattle, Washington, on the status of the implementation of the Personal Ordinariate for the United States.
Clergy dossiers are being received at this time for submission to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
Bishop Moyer reported that he was very encouraged and hopeful for the future prospect of the Ordinariate for the United States as a result of the meeting this afternoon.