Pastoral Letter to those preparing for reception

22 02 2012


Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

We begin today the great season of Lent in which the Church is, each year, called to penance and conversion in a mystical journey that take her through the passion and death of the Lord, to the Promised Land of the resurrection.

Ash Wednesday also marks the formal start of a journey for those of you who seek to be received into the full communion of the Catholic Church through the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham. Your pilgrimage through the desert of Lent will, this year, be especially poignant.

In the First Reading at Mass today we hear this sentiment rehearsed once more: “Come back to me with all your heart […] turn to the Lord your God again, for he is all tenderness and compassion”.

That call to continuing conversion – the recognition of our sin and a true spirit of contrition and repentance – is a universal call to sanctity which, in a special way, you bravely take up this Lent.

Take courage that the reward of faithful commitment to Christ is a deepening  of our personal relationship with him, in and through his Catholic Church.

As you study the faith and prepare spiritually for your reception during Holy Week, allow your heart to be fully converted toward Christ, and fully open to him, so that his love and his grace finds there fertile ground to take root, and to flourish. Only then can we completely allow his heart to speak to our hearts, and know truly the depth of his love.

May God bless you as you set out on this journey, and may Our Lady, Star of the Sea, be your guide to the safe harbour which awaits you.

The Right Reverend Monsignor Keith Newton
Ordinary of  the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham

CBS: Q&A regarding Ordinariate grant

27 07 2011

The Confraternity of the Blessed Sacrament has published this Q&A regarding the recent grant of £1m to the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham. It is available the CBS website here:


1. Is the CBS a Church of England charity?

No. The trustees wanted to be quite clear on this point and so took advice from a leading charity lawyer. They advised that the CBS is subject to neither Rome nor Canterbury. It is not part of a Church of England structure and it has its own independent hierarchy. Its membership includes individuals outside the Church of England.

The CBS was founded for the advancement of the catholic faith in accordance with traditions which were, at the time, outside the scope of the Church of England. Subsequent changes in the Church of England have meant that rites that had previously caused CBS’s founders and supporters to get into trouble with the authorities had come to be accepted by the Church of England authorities.

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Catholic League: Pastoral Message of CBCEW – November 1993

27 05 2011

This Pastoral Message, published by the Catholic Bishops of England & Wales in November 1993, has been published on the blog of the Catholic League:

As the first ordinations of women to the priesthood in the Church of England draw near, a number of Anglicans, both laity and clergy, who are unsure about their future in the Church of England, have approached members of this Bishops’ Conference. We are aware, too, that many others, in some ways represented by those who have approached us, await our response. In the light of these discussions, and of our own careful consideration of all the issues involved, we now wish to address publicly the questions they have raised.

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Catholic League: Resolution of the Plenary Meeting of CBCEW – April 1994

23 05 2011

This continues the Catholic League‘s series of posts of texts pertaining to the transition and reconciliation of Anglicans into the full communion of the Catholic Church in the 1990s.

Matters relating to the Reception of Anglican Clergy into the Catholic Church.


In recent weeks and months approaches have been made by members of the Church of England unsure, about their future, to most of the Roman Catholic Dioceses of England. These have been both from individuals and groups, clergy and laity. Some have already been received into full communion with the Catholic Church; others are about to be so received; others are making first enquiries about what such a journey involves and how they will be received.

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Catholic League: Pastoral Message of CBCEW – April 1993

22 05 2011

From the blog of the Catholic League:

Over the course of the coming days and weeks we will be publishing some texts from the 1990s, especially pertaining to the management of the transition of Anglican clergy  and laity to the Catholic Church. Many of these, it is thought, are not available elsewhere online. There are significant differences between the circumstances of the 1990s and the current development – the difference between individual and group reconciliation being chief amongst them. Having said that, many of the texts enunciate, in a helpful way, the journey of many of Anglicans towards the full communion of the Catholic Church and the official response of the Catholic Church in England and Wales, to their requests.

First is a Pastoral Message from the Archbishops and Bishop of England & Wales to the Catholic priests and people of their dioceses. It was read in parishes on the Fourth Sunday of Easter 1993.

Last November, the General Synod of the Church of England passed a resolution authorising the ordination of women to the priesthood.  Although this measure was agreed by a two-thirds majority, it left a number of Anglican clergy and laypeople not only opposed to the decision itself but also deeply troubled in conscience. As has been well-publicised, some have turned towards the Catholic Church and begin to consider whether they might seek full communion with our Church.  The extent of reaction has taken many by surprise.  The uncertainty about the numbers involved has helped to fuel rumour and misunderstanding.

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