Ordinariate Chrism Mass: Comment and Photographs

4 04 2012

Joanna Bogle writes:

A Chrism of history…

 …as the Papal Nuncio concelebrated the first Chrism Mass for the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham. Over 60 former Anglican clergy, and five former Anglican bishops, all now in full Communion with the universal Church, were joined by a packed congregation at St James’, Spanish Place…it was a great privilege to be there and something that I will never forget.

Glorious music, a beautiful and reverent liturgy, the roar of strong voices affirming promises of commitment to the sacred priesthood, a fine sermon by Mgr Keith Newton. As has become a little tradition at Chrism Masses, members of the Association of Catholic Women handed out small holy cards to all the clergy as they arrived, with a message of thanks for the service they give to the Church.

The Sacred Oils were brought up to the altar in procession with the hosts and wine before the Offertory – the Sisters of the Ordinariate in their blue religious habits and veils,were in the procession bearing the gifts.

The Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham. Deo Gratias.

Photos here





Whispers in the Loggia: “Brethren in Unity” — History in Houston As Ordinariate Launches

13 02 2012

From Whispers in the Loggia:

Clad in the pontificalia of a bishop yet still the married father of three, this Sunday made for a unique moment in the life of the Stateside church as Jeffrey Steenson — once head of the Episcopal church’s most sprawling diocese — was liturgically installed as founding shepherd of the nationwide Ordinariate for Anglicans entering the Catholic communion, dedicated to the Chair of St Peter.

While the Anglican Use Mass in the Cathedral of the new jurisdiction’s see-city of Houston had initially been slated for next Sunday to coincide with the venture’s patronal feast, the liturgy was moved up in light of next weekend’s consistory to accommodate the presence of two of the top Vatican project’s key American movers: Cardinals Donald Wuerl of Washington (Rome’s delegate for the US’ implementation of Anglicanorum coetibus) and Galveston-Houston’s Daniel DiNardo, who’s released his archdiocese’s Our Lady of Walsingham parish to serve as the Ordinariate’s de facto cathedral, technically termed its “principal church.”

According to a pre-Mass briefing, Steenson — a onetime sportswriter and Oxford-trained patristic scholar ordained a Catholic priest in 2009 — was elevated to the honorary prelature during the rite.

Though precluded from becoming a Catholic bishop due to his marriage, the new monsignor — who, unlike his English counterpart, Msgr Keith Newton, has taken to donning the violet zucchetto normally reserved for bishops — enjoys full membership and voting rights in the USCCB. Within his charge itself, Steenson essentially has all the responsibilities and privileges of a diocesan bishop or eparch, save two: the ability to perform ordinations and consecrate oils.

With the Ordinariate’s erection by CDF decree on New Year’s Day, the number of American Catholic jurisdictions now stands at 198. Some hundred priests and as many as two thousand laity are expected to enter the structure just in its first wave; the first community to directly join the Ordinariate, Baltimore’s Mount Calvary parish, was received by Steenson in late January. Given earlier indications from north of the border, the reach of the quasi-diocese is likewise to include Canadian groups seeking to take up Pope Benedict’s 2009 offer of joint entry to Anglican communities wishing to full communion en masse.
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William Oddie: Is Damian Thompson right? Are the English bishops trying to smother the ordinariate? If so, it’s time for Rome to act.

19 01 2012

Dr William Oddie writes at the Catholic Herald:

Let me direct your attention to a couple of websites, which seen together provide food for thought. The first is the website of the new US ordinariate, the Ordinariate of the Chair of Peter, a name which splendidly makes very clear a basic characteristic of most Anglican converts these days: their loyalty to the Magisterium (undoubtedly one reason for the open hostility of most of our hierarchy to the idea of an independent Anglican Catholic jurisdiction 20 years ago). The newly announced US ordinary (who has been a friend of mine for 30 years; I first knew him in Oxford when he was doing his DPhil) is Fr Jeffrey Steenson, a distinguished Patristics scholar and the former Anglican bishop of the Rio Grande. From his website, I perceive that he is getting very full support from the American hierarchy in more than just fine words: he already, for instance, has a “principal church”, in other words, a sort of cathedral, which was immediately designated as such on the erection of the US ordinariate, by the Cardinal Archbishop of Houston, Texas, where he will be based.

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Dylan Parry: Joyful Scenes at St James’, Spanish Place

19 01 2012

Hundreds gathered from all over the UK to attend Solemn Evensong, Procession of the Blessed Sacrament and Benediction at St James’ Spanish Place on Sunday. The occasion was the celebration of the first anniversary of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham. The church’s parish priest, Fr Christopher Colven, kindly gave his permission for the event, which was organised by the Marylebone Ordinariate Group.

Mgr Keith Newton, Ordinary of the Ordinariate, presided over this solemn and joyful act of thanksgiving. He was joined in the sanctuary by Bishop Peter Elliott, Auxiliary Bishop of Melbourne and Episcopal Delegate for the establishment of a Personal Ordinariate in Australia. Also present were Mgr John Armitage of the Diocese of Brentwood, Fr Christopher Colven of St James’s, and several Ordinariate clergymen. The Abbot of Farnborough (a former Anglican) and some of the Abbey’s monks, as well as representatives of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta and other organisations within the Catholic Church were also present.

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Fr Ivan Aquilina on the anniversary of the Ordinariate

16 01 2012

Fr Ivan Aquilina writes:

A year ago today, with many of my fellow travellers in the journey of faith, I was sitting in that noble space which is Westminster Cathedral.

As we arrived at Victoria Station we met Deacon Keith Newton. We walked with him to the Cathedral, what a sense of joy and anticipation. The Walsingham Sisters were in front of the Cathedral, a familiar and grounding presence in this complete new setting. This was not Christ the King Gordon Square so familiar for us, this was a new setting but with all the familiar faces, friends, brothers and sisters with whom we daily stood up for the faith in the Church of England. This was a manifestation of Anglicanorum Coetibus coming together. But many felt: was this true?

We sat in a packed CathedralThe three deacons were ordained priests. These were the three anglican bishops we looked up to and supported, truly our leaders.

During the Eucharistic prayer the newly ordained John Broadhurst prayed part of it. His voice going round the Catholic Cathedral is what made the penny drop for me.  This is all real. Till a fortnight before Fr John was my anglican bishop, and what a good one he was too. I was proud of him and felt privileged to be his priest. And now we were out of communion: he a catholic priest me an anglican one. He was there to lead the way, we his priests and people getting ready.

After communion the Archbishop of Westminster read out the Decree of Erection of the Personal Ordinariate in England and Wales. It was to be known as the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham under the patronage of Blessed John Henry Newman. Fr Keith Newton was to be the Ordinary. That day, a year ago today, was a blessed day, a day of joy and hope and Christian Unity. So many of us are now home as Roman Catholics (not the mental gymnastics of Anglo catholics or English catholics or whatever but real catholics: Roman Catholics, in unity with the See of Peter). Thanks be to God for the Romanitas, and thanks be to God for Benedict XVI: the Pope of Christian Unity.

Today, a year on, with my group of the Ordinariate I give thanks to God and offer Mass for our Ordinary and our Ordinariate and especially in thanksgiving for this past year. I shall pray for the all the three Monsignori, for their dedication and commitment and for Bishop Alan Hopes for all his support and guidance.





Catholic League: Newman Fund raises over £50k for the Ordinariate

6 01 2012

From the Catholic League:

Now that the Ordinariate has its own systems firmly in place for processing donations and collections, the League is no longer accepting new donations towards the Ordinariate through the Blessed John Henry Newman Fund. Existing regular donations remain unaffected for a transitional period. The gifts of those who still wish to donate to the Fund will be applied to the League’s four objects, which may, of course, include support to the Ordinariate.

Since its inception in October 2010, the Catholic League has raised over £50,500 for the Ordinariate, including over £7,500 in Gift Aid that would not otherwise have been recoverable. This is in addition to the League’s own grants of nearly £70,000 to support the work of the Ordinary and the Ordinariate’s central services in the first few years of start-up.





Rocco Palmo on US Ordinariate

1 01 2012

From Whispers in the Loggia:

Twenty-six months since Anglicanorum coetibus laid the groundwork for groups of Anglicans to cross the Tiber while maintaining elements of their liturgical, spiritual, theological and canonical patrimony, the top-shelf papal project has taken a sizable leap this New Year’s morning, with as the establishment of the venture’s Stateside jurisdiction by the Holy See.

In a rare Sunday announcement — a sign of the degree to which Rome means business — the Vatican’s press bulletin gave official word of the erection of the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St Peter, encompassing the territory of the United States. The quasi-diocese for the entering groups is the second of its kind, following England’s Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham, which was launched a year ago this month.

Fr Jeffrey Steenson, 59, the former Episcopal bishop of Rio Grande ordained a priest of the archdiocese of Santa Fe in 2009, was named its founding head. A patristics scholar who’s been serving until now as a professor at Houston’s St Mary’s Seminary and University of St Thomas, the appointment is effective immediately.

According to the usual ops, a press conference will be held on Monday to mark the canonical erection of the American Ordinariate at Houston’s Our Lady of Walsingham church (top), which will be the “principal church” — essentially the cathedral — of the new entity.

The nation’s second-oldest Anglican Use community, the Norman-style church was dedicated in 2003, built by its members a decade after their reception into the Catholic fold. Begun with a dozen pilgrims, the parish now numbers more than 300 families.

The designation of a principal church for the US Anglicanorum branch already places the project ahead of its English counterpart. Despite having a year’s head-start, the UK Ordinariate is still awaiting the release of a church to serve as its hub.

Alongside its sacramental seat (interior, above), the Ordinariate’s offices are also to be in Houston, on the Walsingham parish campus.

As ever, much more to come.