Card. Kaspar about the Anglican ordinariates

Card. Kaspar about the Anglican ordinariates.

The gentlemanly Sandro Magister has this.

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18 Responses to Card. Kaspar about the Anglican ordinariates

  1. sarumuse says:

    I don’t want to be ad hominem about a Prince of the Church, but there are some highly interesting conversations in the French “Forum Catholique” which have inspired my recent postings in my website – http://pagesperso-orange.fr/civitas.dei/reflections11.09.htm and somer comments by readers of Rorate Coeli.

    If Cardinal Kasper’s observations and opinions correspond with reality, then the announcement by Cardinal Levada and the Apostolic Constitution and the Complementary Norms are totally incoherent. If the TAC is out of the circuit, other than a few “sincere” individual converts, that leaves only Forward in Faith UK and the Anglican Use in the USA. Those two entities alone do not fit the “design” of the future Ordinariates. No other Anglican group has approached Rome, especially not Cardinal Kasper – who would stab them in the back.

    As my father told me when I was a little boy, it’s sinful and wrong to tell lies!

    Fr. Anthony

  2. William Tighe says:

    I have just read the Sandro Magister piece, and it has confirmed my strong sense of puzzlement about what Cardinal Kasper means in his recent statements about the “Anglican ordinariat.” Please refer to paragraph 20 of the Magister article, and then to the last three paragraphs of this shorter report:

    http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/cns/0905080.htm

    Here are those last three paragraphs, with my comments (made a few days ago) between and after them:

    “Cardinal Kasper also spoke about the Traditional Anglican Communion, a group that claims more than 400,000 members and describes itself as ‘a worldwide association of orthodox Anglican churches, working to maintain the catholic faith and resist the secularization of the church’.”

    Well, okay.

    The cardinal said that while the TAC leaders asked the Vatican two years ago to find a way for them to join the Catholic Church, they did not participate in the conversations that led to the pope’s recent provision.

    What conversations? They wouldn’t have participated in the intra-Vatican conversations that led to the Ap. Con., but neither would have any other Anglicans. But if he’s referring (and I don’t know that he is) to the conversations in Rome in April 2008 with some FIF/UK bishops (1) and the January 2009 conclave in Vienna (2), then it’s a peculiar thing for him to say, since all of these things worked together for the good of all, rather than tripping each other up, or strewing banana skins all around. Actually, I am inclined to think that FIF/UK’s getting in on the act accelerated things rather a good deal, but, still, it was an addition onto the foundation laid by TAC.

    “‘Now, however, they are jumping on a train that already has left the station. If they are sincere, OK, the doors are open. But we cannot close our eyes to the fact that they have not been in communion with Canterbury since 1992′ and therefore are not technically leaving the Anglican Communion to join the Roman Catholic Church, he said.”

    This is the “say what?” passage; it seems senseless and to lack clear meaning (or perhaps any at all). If “they” means the TAC, certainly the passage is perfectly incomprehensible, and why pull 1992 out of the air? I don’t know when the TAC presence in England began (as I recall, TAC as an entity only began in, when, 1993?), but there was some kind of Continuing Anglican presence there ever since the CofE began to ordain women to the diaconate in 1987. The whole passage seems to be laboring to convey the sense that since the TAC has not been in communion with Canterbury for some years, therefore if it manages to “jump on the train” they will be lucky if the conductors don’t push them off at the next stop, since there are no suitable “third class cars” for the likes of them. One would think that Kasper would want to say the opposite, that all remains fair weather (“Always look on the bright side of life …”) between Rome and Canterbury; we’re just rescuing a few “strays” who haven’t been in communion with Canterbury lo these many years, and so Canterbury shouldn’t be upset with any of this, and if a few stray “kosher Anglicans” get on board, we won;t let that get in the way of our tea party. But to twist the passage to make it say that would be a real triumph of Newspeak. Perhaps something was “lost in the translation.” And, in any event, TAC has been holding private discussions with Rome since 2001 — with the PCPCU until 2003, and thereafter with the CDF.

    (1) FIF/UK = Forward-in-Faith/UK, a largely Anglo-Catholic organization strongly opposed to the “ordination” of women and whose leaders are, for the most part, “Anglo-Papalists,” Catholic-minded Anglicans who believe in “all that the Catholic Church teaches to be revealed by God” and who have been seeking, in friendly collaboration with the TAC, “corporate reunion” with the Catholic Church. There are three so-called “flying bishops” (technically, “Provincial Episcopal Visitors”) who were created in 1993 when the Church of England began to ordain women to “the priesthood,” to minister to parishes that wished to distance themselves from their diocesan bishops who ordain women. They were given the titles of old defunct Anglo-Saxon episcopal sees: Beverley, Ebbsfleet and Richborough. The present bishops of Ebbsfleet (Andrew Burnham) and Richborouugh (Keith Newton) have acclaimed the recent Apostolic Constitution, while Beverley (Martyn Jarrett) has made a more ambivalent response. There are also two retired “flying bishops:” Edwin Barnes (formerly Richborough) has also acclaimed it, while John Gaisford (formerly Beverley) has affirmed strongly his lack of interest in “the Roman option.” There is also the Bishop of Fulham, John Broadhurst, the equivalent of a Catholic “auxiliary bishop” withi the Diocese of London, who is perhaps the most prominent bishop in FIF/UK and who acts as the equivalent of a “flying bishop” within the London diocese; he had also acclaimed the recent action of the Holy Father.

    (2) Two of the “flying bishops” visited Rome just after Easter 2008, where they spoke with Card. Kasper of the PCPCU and with members of the CDF; it appears that (much as the TEC bishops had done in 2007) they signified to the CDF their complete acceptance of the “Catechism of the Catholic Church” and their desire for reunion. Then, in January 2009, Cardinal Schoenborn hosted a two-day meeting in Vienna of 4 FIF/UK leading figures (2 bishops and 2 clergymen) with himself and other “Romans,” in the course of which he conveyed to them assurances of his support and that of the pope. Perhaps he also informed them that a definite “canonical structure” would be erected before the end of the year.

  3. kgurries says:

    Cardinal Kaspar said:
    “the pope has opened the door with kindness, he has pointed out a way, he has offered a concrete possibility that is certainly not contrary to ecumenism. The decree ‘Unitatis Redintegratio’ of Vatican II had already clearly specified that ecumenism is one thing and conversion is another. But there is no contradiction.”

    I am glad to know that this new decree is “not contrary to ecumenism”. Yet, according to Kaspar, it is not really ecumenism since the new structure involves “conversion” which is distinct from “ecumenism”. This seems very confusing and somewhat ambiguous. What is ecumenism all about? What is its goal and direction? Is Pope Benedict really the Pope of Christian Unity or merely the Pope who does not technically “contradict” Christian Unity by his Papal acts?

  4. Ogard says:

    kgurries

    Conversion is if an individual or a group of individuals realizes that the Catholic Church is the Church they should belong to unconditionally, and takes steps in that direction on his/its own initiative. Briefly about it: UR no. para 4.

    Ecumenism is about relations between separated Christian Churches and Communities, which all have their own versions of what it means to be the true church, and each realizing that such a state of affairs is incompatible with the will of Christ of which they all claim to be the followers.

    The problem for each is how to make real fully what Christ prayed for on that Night, without compromising their respective consciences. It is something to work for, without expecting immediate results.

    For details: Decree on Ecumenism (UR). Not too much to read through: 30 pages’small format pamphlet although it does require a serious involvement if one is keen to understand it, and draw his own conclusions either way. Without it, it is senseless both to agree and to disagree; and unnwise to rely on second hand information

  5. mpm says:

    Prof. Tighe,

    Good of you to point out these facts. As a rule, I find what Cardinal Kaspar says — here, as elsewhere — enigmatic.

    Perhaps he is addressing more the “professional ecumenical crowd”? My own thoughts summarized:

    1) If there be a neat distinction between “being ecumenical” and “being converted”, perhaps the former is one of those never-ending tasks, whereas the latter is more episodic. One gets the idea from what Cardinal Kaspar says that he “prefers” the former; whereas Pope Benedict, being more down-to-earth, would rather focus on the latter (where possible). Along the lines of one of your own points. This leaves the bailiwick of “ecumenism” at the important intellectual level intact, and gives the Roman Curia something to do.

    2) Practical Ecumenism. I.e., common praxis of Catholics and others (warmly welcomed by the Russian Orthodox in my understanding) in giving a common Christian witness to address the major problems facing mankind in the political/economic/social order. As a cardinal, Benedict XVI wrote of “models” of ecumenism, this being one of them. Less emphasis on “theological and doctrinal dialogue”, more emphasis on working-together in fellowship for practical benefits to mankind in the temporal order. A “coalition of the willing”. But with respect to the Roman Curia, they would appear to be mostly out of the picture, since such “ecumenism” (by definition) is as local as can be.

  6. Steve K. says:

    “The cardinal said that while the TAC leaders asked the Vatican two years ago to find a way for them to join the Catholic Church, they did not participate in the conversations that led to the pope’s recent provision.”

    I do not believe Cardinal Kasper participated in the conversations either, which I think is highly significant.

    I find it hard to believe what he says. I think it may be more sour grapes, and him trying to put his own wishful thinking spin on the matter, given that he was completely left out of the loop on a critical matter that he should have been involved in. The fact that he wasn’t constitutes a summary judgment on his performance at his post and so I must take any of his pronouncements on this cum grano salis.

  7. Daniel says:

    I’ve thought that perhaps the CDF involvement might have been to consider the question of whether the Holy Father could set up a new Church Sui Iuris, and if not (it seems Cardinal Kasper would have been against it due to the Balamand document of 1993) what would be the next best structure. I’m wondering whether the rules for membership in the Personal Ordinariate won’t be similar to the Canons for Ascription to a Church Sui Iuris in the 1990 Code of Canons of Oriental Churches. I’m a cradle Catholic that is a parishioner at an Anglican Use parish and am trying to figure how this will effect me, as I’m not normally eligible to be a member of the Ordinary itself. I expect that my right to continue to participate would be similar to:
    “Canon 403 – §1. With due regard for the right and obligation to preserve everywhere their own rite, lay persons have the right to participate actively in the liturgical celebrations of any Church sui iuris whatsoever, according to the norms of the liturgical books.”

  8. kgurries says:

    Ogard said:
    “Ecumenism is about relations between separated Christian Churches and Communities, which all have their own versions of what it means to be the true church…”

    Yes, but “relations” to what end — if not full visible unity? This new decree, it seems to me, ought to be considered an authentic fruit of (true) ecumenism in this sense. Why speak about this Papal act as if it is something altogether different from an ecumenism that is oriented towards the perfection of communion?

  9. mpm says:

    Daniel,

    The Pastor of your Anglican Use parish is probably the best person to ask about those questions.

    But, of some note:

    (1) These sorts of “new” structures, as far as I am aware, are outgrowths of Vatican II pastoral considerations, which have been provided for in the Code of Canon Law (1983) of the Latin Rite. I don’t think any of the sui iuris Churches have such provisions. That is probably why the CDF involvement was appropriate.

    (2) Both the Anglican Use parish, and the Anglican Ordinariates, will live within the Latin Rite.

    (3) I wouldn’t think it would be harder for someone already in the Latin Rite to become incorporated into the Ordinariate itself than it would be to change Rites within the Catholic Church, and the latter move is certainly possible (and perhaps not very infrequent).

    (4) None of the above should be significant if all you want to do is to be a member of the Anglican Use parish itself.

    I think those are valid points, but I would suppose your pastor would be a far more informed person to ask about it.

  10. Ogard says:

    kgurries

    The “full visible unity” is, of course, the aim of ecumenism, but not achieved by compromising conscience of anyone. Not every case of the full visible unity is an outcome of ecumenism. The full unity can be result of individuals’ conversion, which has nothing to do with the ecumenism.

    But really, one has to be familiar with the Decree on Ecumenism (UR). Formally speaking, the recent papal act is an act that stipulates the terms on which groups of disenchanted Anglicans can be received into the Church. Cardinal Kasper is right when he says that it is a conversion, not an ecumenical procedure.

    Neverthesess, it has something to do with the UR. Without this Decree the papal act would have been inconceivable. I can’t imagine it done by Pius IX, Pius XI or Pius XII. One of the crucial propositions of the DH is that “Catholics be pleased to recognize and set value on the true Christian possessions which are found among the brethren separated from us and which derive from the common heritage” (no. 4/8), and this can’t be done without our own “inward conversion” (7/1). We have to admit that these Anglican brethren are already “established in a communion with the Catholic Church, even if the communion be incomplete” (3/1). In other words, when, and if, they come, they will not come empty-handed. We must not “disregard the contribution to our own edification that can be made by the effects of the Holy Spirit’s grace” in them (4/9).

    DH conceives the ecumenical movement as a gradual process, not as something to be achieved overnight and effected by a papal act.

  11. Daniel says:

    Father Phillips, the pastor of Our Lady of the Atonement will be holding a meeting for those that have questions such as my own on December 12th. He was recently in Rome on pilgrimage with the school children at the time the Apostolic Constitution was released and spoke to some officials at the CDF. He’ll have some canon law experts at the meeting as well. He is working out some way to have a recording of the meeting online for those interested afterwards. Info is on his blog at http://atonementparish.blogspot.com/2009/11/meeting-on-december-12th.html .

  12. kgurries says:

    Ogard, I think all agree that we can distinguish between “ecumenism” and “conversion” since not every conversion directly results from ecumenical activity. At the same time, authentic “ecumenism” that is oriented towards full visible communion implies true “conversions” (i.e., consistent with the duties and corresponding rights of conscience) of those not yet enjoying the perfection of communion. If this is true, then there is a necessary link between authentic ecumenism and the free act of “conversion” necessary to bring about the desired unity. Granted, all of this is a gradual process consistent with human freedom and not something simply mechanical.

    Now is this consistent with your reading of UR? Or is “ecumenism” supposed to create the desired “unity” without a necessary conversion in your view?

  13. Ogard says:

    kgurries, – I am not sure that I understand what you mean by “conversion”. My reading of UR is that the conversion in classical sense, which has nothing to do with ecumenism (although it is not incompatible with it, UR no.4, para 4), has to be distinguished form the conversion in the context of ecumenical movement (no 7, implicitly also: nos 5 and 6) of which it is a constitutive component rather than something extraneous to it demanding the “necessary link” (to use your words) between the two.

    In this latter sense the conversion is required of the Catholic Church too; not in so far as she is the Holy and Immaculate Bride, Mystical Body of Christ, infallible in what she believes, etc, but in so far as she has sinners in her bosom many of whom are, in various degrees, material “heretics” and/or “schismatics”.

    So, whether your account is or is not consistent with my reading of UR depends of what you mean by “conversion”; and ecumenism is not supposed to create unity without conversion, if the latter is understood in the second sense (see above). The UR does not conceive the unity as an unholy compromise at the cost of truth.

  14. kgurries says:

    Ogard, I submit that UR nowhere intends to replace one type of conversion for the other:

    A)Conversion as enterance into the full visible communion with the Catholic Church (UR no.4, para 4)
    B)Conversion as interior “change of heart” that all Christians are constantly called to make (no 7, etc.).

    Both are “classical” insofar as (B) has long been part of the traditional prayer of the Church in the Divine Office: “Converte nos, Deus, salutaris noster” (Make us turn to Thee, O God our Savior).

    So, yes there are various senses given to the term “conversion”. The kind of “converion” highlighted in UR (type B) does not replace the need for enterance in full visible communion with the Catholic Church (type A). Rather, Ecumenism can be considered as a preparation for it — and Catholics certainly have to continually purify their own hearts (type B) in order to help bring this about.

  15. Ogard says:

    kgurries –

    “I submit that UR nowhere intends to replace one type of conversion for the other” – agreed. Both are legitimate.

    “Conversion as interior ‘change of heart’ that all Christians are constantly called to make (no 7, etc.).” – My reading of this, in the context of the whole Document, is that it is more than mere emotional change that is required: it is the change of attitude in all three aspects of ecclesiastical unity: doctrine, government and worship. We must distinguish between those matters to which the Church is irrevocably committed, from those which can be modified, refined, supplemented in various ways; and even the former, the irrevocable ones, can be reinterpreted while preserving their fundamental meaning.

    And each one of us, as an individual, should keep in mind that his own understanding of any matter does not infallibly reflects the mind of the Church however great effort he makes it to be so, and however much he is convinced that it is so. In other way, we should beware of creating obstacles that are of our own making.

    If the same attitude is adopted by those who are not in full communion with us a door would be open for a great area of subjects which could be discussed in a sincere, friendly dialogue, in the course of which everybody would be enriched, i.e. come closer to the Truth which is – God.

    “Both are ‘classical’ insofar as (B) has long been part of the traditional prayer of the Church in the Divine Office: ‘Converte nos, Deus, salutaris noster’ (Make us turn to Thee, O God our Savior).” – Yes, and it includes the sin of division. The Church is indeed One, indivisible and undivided, but we as individuals, and as small local communities, Catholics and non-Catholics are divided, which is a material sin, and might be formal too if we make it worse due to our carelessness.

    “The kind of ‘conversion’ highlighted in UR (type B) does not replace the need for entrance in full visible communion with the Catholic Church (type A). Rather, Ecumenism can be considered as a preparation for it—and Catholics certainly have to continually purify their own hearts (type B) in order to help bring this about.” – Yes, and to start with, each one of us must keep in mind that the “full visible communion with the Catholic Church” as he understands it, is not necessarily the full visible communion as Our Lord wants it, i.e. as the Church understands it.

    So, we must be careful when using the term “entrance”, applying it to “them”: there is much of what is Catholic in Churches and communities which are “not Catholic”, and so much of what is not Catholic, “in” the Catholic Church.

    (Note: if you respond, I sincerely regret that I will not be able to reply before February, because of private commitments. Once free, and if you wish, I’ll get in touch via your website.)

  16. kgurries says:

    Ogard, sure drop me a note sometime via my blog. I am interested to understand what you mean by the following:

    “Yes, and to start with, each one of us must keep in mind that the “full visible communion with the Catholic Church” as he understands it, is not necessarily the full visible communion as Our Lord wants it, i.e. as the Church understands it”.

    Does this imply that Our Lord calls some to a “unity” that is not necessarily Catholic unity? This seems problematic. Whatever legitimate diversity exists within the Church, all are called to unity in the following: 1)unity of Faith (one Faith); 2) unity in sacraments (one baptism); 3)unity of government under Christ and His vicar the Pope (One Lord).

  17. Ogard says:

    kgurries
    “Does this imply that Our Lord calls some to a “unity” that is not necessarily Catholic unity?”. Answer: NO; and it must be, of course, 1,2,3 as you say. The problem is: what does it mean in the concrete?

    My assertion which you find problematic: “Yes, and….”etc, should be understood in the context of: “And each one of us, as an individual, should keep in mind that his own understanding of any matter does not infallibly reflects the mind of the Church however great effort he makes it to be so, and however much he is convinced that it is so.”

    In other words, the unity you conceive, or I conceive, or whoever else (except the Pope ex cathedra) conceives, is not necessarily the unity God wants, and His Catholic Church expects; for the simple reason that none of us is infallible.

    (I responded, because I wouldn’t like to stay on the Blog for three months – misunderstood, and consequently misleading a potential peruser of our exchange. But I have to break, and will be pleased – thank you – to get in touch in due course. God bless.)

  18. kgurries says:

    Ogard, thanks for the clarification. I would only disagree with the notion that the “unity God wants” and that “His Catholic Church expects” is something mysterious that remains to be clearly communicated and well understood by the Catholic faithful.