BBC Radio 2: Archbishop of York on the Ordinariate

25 04 2011

The Most Revd John Sentamu, the Archbishop of York, was interviewed by Aled Jones on BBC Radio 2 on Easter Sunday morning. A transcript can be found below. The audio can be found here at around 1hr 49mins.

AJ: …[w]e read yesterday that some 900 Anglicans have converted to Catholicism this weekend, largely, we are told, because of the Church’s decision to ordain women as bishops. Is this a cause for concern?

JS: All I would say is that when people who live in a family grow up, they leave the family and I’m grateful for the years that they have served in the Church of England – the Church that nurtured them, they were nurtured and have grown, and if they’re going to find a better home somewhere else, that’s OK. I remember, there’s a wonderful story of Charles Wesley’s son converting – and remember Charles Wesley was John Wesley’s brother, a Methodist – and his son decided to convert to Roman Catholicism and John Wesley sent a little note that said “Dear Nephew, I hear you’ve converted to Catholicism – I don’t really care much which Church you join, as long as you know Jesus as your Lord and Saviour”. So for me, if people are going to find Christ more in the Roman Catholic Church and they know him as their Lord and Saviour – good luck to them and God bless them.

AJ: It sounds like it’s the beginning of the end for the Church of England, doesn’t it?

JS: No, never, never, never, never. I mean, I think – you look at all our parishes, they are still strong in every part of the country, we still try to serve the nation and as long as the gospel is being lived in those places, people will leave – and we never really, by the way, publicise the other fact that quite a number of Catholics are coming the other way (AJ: Sure). I have baptised and confirmed people who have come the other way, who were never baptised in their own churches, and then occasionally you get people wanting to join the ordained ministry of the Church of England – we don’t trumpet about it, because I don’t think it’s necessary for us to say “Oh, by the way, so and so’s gone”, because we’re still part of the one holy, catholic and apostolic church, and I don’t think we should publicise it – so, it’s happening the other way round as well, by the way Sir.

AJ: Good on ya. Let’s talk about the Royal wedding, shall we?