Former Anglican Bishops now Monsignors

Anna Arco of the UK’s best Catholic weekly, the Catholic Herald has this report:

Pope makes former Anglican bishops monsignori

By Anna Arco

The Pope has honoured three former Anglican bishops, the first members of the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham, with the title of monsignor.

Fr Keith Newton, the leader of the Ordinariate who has most of the functions of a bishop, and Fr John Broadhurst, the former Bishop of Fulham, have been granted the papal award of Apostolic Pronotary, the highest ecclesial title for non-bishops. Fr Andrew Burnham, the former Bishop of Ebbsfleet, has been granted the papal award of Prelate of Honour, and is therefore also a monsignor.

The three men became the first clergy of the world’s first personal ordinariate set up for groups of former Anglicans as a result of the Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum coetibus in January.

Groups of former Anglicans will be received into the Church in Holy Week and the priests for the ordinariate will be ordained around Pentecost.

The ordinary expects that about 900 people will become members of the ordinariate in Holy Week, including 61 members of the clergy. A majority of the laity entering the ordinariate took part in Rite of Election ceremonies across the country last weekend.

Fr Newton said: “I am really delighted by the numbers of Anglican laity who have begun the journey into the full Communion with the Catholic Church in Holy Week. It has not been an easy journey for many but I know they will be greatly blessed. The Rites of Election (or Enrolment for ordinariate members) around the dioceses marked a very moving and important part of the journey so far.”

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  1. RichardT says:


    And well done to the Pope (or whoever suggested it to him) for thinking of this.

  2. Liz says:

    These continue to be such exciting developments! God bless them all and our wonderful Holy Father!

  3. William Tighe says:

    IIRC, all four English Anglican bishops who became Catholics in the early/mid 1990s were also honored as monsigniori, not only the late Graham Leonard (d. 2010), formerly Bishop of London in the Church of England, but also Richard Rutt, formerly Bishop of Leicester, and two former Anglican suffragan (= auxiliary), Conrad Meyers of Dorchester and John Klyberg of Fulham (John Broarhurst’s predecessor as Bishop of Fulham, in fact).

  4. irishgirl says:

    Wow, this is great! God bless our Holy Father!

  5. Centristian says:

    Protonotaries Apostolic? Wow. I’ll be honest, I didn’t even think that Rome made honorary PAs anymore. Back in the day, a PA was entitled to certain pontificals–the miter, ring, gauntlets, buskins, pectoral cross (but not the crozier)–and to celebrate Mass using those pontificals several times a year. I think those privileges, however, were amongst the many clerical perquisites that fell victim to Pope Paul’s pruning clippers in the late 60s.

  6. Tim Ferguson says:

    There are still other PA’s around. The archdiocese of Detroit has one, and I knew of a couple up in Ottawa. Sadly, yes, the pontifical privileges given to them were revoked when things were “simplified.” Of course, given that the Ordinary of the Anglican Ordinariate is granted certain privileges of dress, perhaps this is a step towards restoring some of the flowering glory of ecclesiastical haberdashery.

    I’m reminded of the comment a priest friend of mine once made, referring to the one line in scripture where Our Blessed Lord speaks of Monsignors – Matthew 6:28 – “They labor not, neither do they spin, but I say to you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was arrayed as one of these.”

  7. shane says:

    How does one address a Monsignor? ‘Cause they could just insist on using the direct meaning (‘My Lord’) – the same way they would have been addressed as CoE bishops.

  8. Tim, you are SUCH A RIOT! LOL.

  9. RichardT says:

    Do they still get a ferraiuolo as well?

  10. RichardT says:

    I just looked it up on Wikipedia (admittedly not the best source of ecclesiastical information), and apparently they can still wear the ferraiuolo in non-liturgical situations, but that their right to liturgical pontificals was abolished in 1969.

    But it also says that one cannot normally become a Pronotary Apostolic until at least 20 years after ordination, unless one is also a Vicar General. Clearly that has been waived in this case, or Rome has serious doubts about the correctness of Apostolicae Curae.

  11. RichardT says:

    Sorry, I of course meant “serious doubts about the current relevance of Apostolicae Curae”, i.e. the argument that although correct at the time it was issued, subsequent events may have changed the situation.

  12. restoration says:

    If the two Pronotaries Apostolic decided to celebrate a Sarum Rite Mass or the Extraordinary Form could they not use liturgical pontificals as those were in force when those rites were in ordinary use? Perhaps the fact that they were suppressed for the Novus Ordo will not affect them.

  13. TNCath says:

    Richard T: A Protonotary Apostolic is still entitled to wear the purple ferriolo along with the purple tuft on the birretta.

    The best description I’ve ever heard of a Protonotary Apostolic regarded a very well known priest in our diocese who was [in]famous for his use of abbreviations. For instance, after saying Mass, he was fond of taking of his vestments, tossing them at an altar boy, and saying, “H.T.U.” (Hang this up.) among many other humorous (albeit sometimes bizarre) eccentricities. When the bishop officiated at this man’s appointment as a P.A., His Excellency looked at him, pointed, and said, “L.L.B.B.A.”: “Looks Like a Bishop But Ain’t.”

  14. asophist says:

    So, we have Apostolic Pronotary and Prelate of Honor. What other kinds of monsignors are there?

  15. TNCath says:

    asphist: “Chaplains of His Holiness” are the lowest rank of monsignor and are only entitled to wear the black house cassock with purple piping and sash. They are no longer entitled the purple choir cassock and can only wear the black house cassock in ceremonies as well.

  16. samgr says:

    In the olden days, PAs got to be called Rt. Rev., like Anglican bishops, while prelates of honor had to content themselves with being merely Very Rev. If they were good boys, though, they were often upped a notch.
    By the way, best line of the day, Tim. I’m right grateful, if not reverent.

  17. Centristian says:

    “In the olden days, PAs got to be called Rt. Rev., like Anglican bishops, while prelates of honor had to content themselves with being merely Very Rev. If they were good boys, though, they were often upped a notch.”

    “Rt. Rev. Msgr.” and “Very Rev. Msgr.”, to be precise. Interestingly, in the old days, not only Anglican ‘bishops’, but Catholic bishops were styled “The Right Reverend”. Catholic archbishops were styled “The Most Reverend” and addressed as “Your Grace” (at least in America and throughout the British Empire).

    I’m not sure precisely when (or why) bishops began to be styled in the manner of archbishops, or why archbishops began to be addressed in the manner of bishops, but there it is.

  18. Martial Artist says:

    A loud Bravo Zulu to His Holiness and to the three new Monsignori. And prayers for the growth of the Ordinariate as well.


    Pax et bonum,
    Keith Töpfer, LCDR, USN [ret]

  19. PghCath says:

    Wonderful news. It’s clear that the Ordinariate remains firmly in the Pope’s mind, and I hope to see many more spring up around the world.

    Any thoughts on why Fr. Broadhurst was made a PA and Fr. Burnham wasn’t? It seems fitting to give the title to Fr. Newton as ordinary, but it also seems weird to distinguish between Fathers Broadhurst and Burnham.

  20. William Tighe says:

    I have rec’d several e-mails today asserting that the original report was mistaken in that only Fr. Newton (as Ordinary) was made a Protonotary Apostolic, while Frs. Broadhurst and Burnham were both made Prelates of Honour.

  21. TNCath says:

    PghCath: “Any thoughts on why Fr. Broadhurst was made a PA and Fr. Burnham wasn’t? It seems fitting to give the title to Fr. Newton as ordinary, but it also seems weird to distinguish between Fathers Broadhurst and Burnham.”

    Might it be age?

  22. Conchur says:

    The initial report is incorrect. Only Msgr Newton was made a Protonotary Apostolic, Msgrs Broadhurst and Burnham were both made Prelates of Honour. This is the report of the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham website:

    Pope Benedict XVI honours Priests of the Ordinariate
    17th March 2011

    It was announced today that the Ordinary of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham has been honoured by His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI, and has been elevated to the rank of Protonotary Apostolic.

    Fr John Broadhurst and Fr Andrew Burnham have also been honoured by being elevated to the rank of Prelate of Honour.

    As such, all three priests are now known as Monsignor.

  23. Andrew Lomas says:

    I like the comment LLBBA!!! Looks like a Bishop but Ain’t!
    Made me laugh.

    What about Hatless and Stickless!???? (Except for Mgr Newton of course!)

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