A new Personal Ordinariate!

The Anglicans/Episcopalians-to-be-Catholics have their own Personal Ordinariate today.

Let there be sung Non nobis and Te Deum.

It is called the Ordinariate of the Chair of Peter!

As widely predicted Fr. Jeffrey Steenson is the new Ordinary.

The document of erection of the Ordinariate is HERE.

The website of the Personal Ordinariate is HERE.

I saw on the website that there is a “support” page. Sending them something could be a nice way to start the year and welcome them into Holy Church.

The SSPX could have one of these. The SSPX could have a Personal Ordinariate.

Pope Benedict XVI is the Pope of Christian Unity.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in Just Too Cool, Pope of Christian Unity and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. PeterK says:

    Glad to see that it is associated with my former parish in Houston Our Lady of Walsingham. For those who are interested you can see photos of the church here

  2. James Joseph says:

    Fr. Z.

    If a fella is an old school, rural New England direct-descendant from the Mayflower; nary a trace of anything but English colonial heritage. And, also a multi-generational Congregationalist becomes Catholic should they migrate to the Ordinariate?

  3. Joseph-Mary says:

    I am happy for this to happen as the Episcopal Church is imploding and now the TAC has a new home in the fullness of faith.

    The SSPX? They may be less likely than the Anglicans to come home. They think they are their own church now and have rebuffed every attempt at reconciliation. Even if there is a personal ordinariate for them, only a percentage will come home to Rome.

  4. Supertradmum says:

    Praise God! And, I shall start praying big time for the SSPX to come into such an arrangement. Mary, Mother of God, thank you and hear our prayers.

  5. Jim Ryon says:

    Thanks be to God. Rev. Steenson has quite a resume’. See here:
    Commercial pilot license?

  6. Supertradmum says:

    Maybe Mulier Fortis can chime in here as to the Blackfen feast today.

  7. James-Joseph — A convert to Catholicism can join any Rite. Generally, that’s the Rite that Baptizes you or which gives you one of the other Sacraments of Initiation (ie, Confirmation and Communion), I think. But probably anybody with a good reason can change Rites or Uses, with permission from the relevant authorities. And of course, there’s absolutely nothing stopping any Catholic from attending Catholic Mass in another Rite, or in another Use within his own Rite. (Access to Sacraments, including Communion, would again be at the discretion of the pastor or relevant authorities, but with any reasonably good reason there shouldn’t be a problem. Sometimes it’s just showing up; sometimes they would like to know who you are, especially in many of the eastern Rites.)

  8. PeterK says:

    “there’s absolutely nothing stopping any Catholic from attending Catholic Mass in another Rite”

    correct. my father was raised in the Byzantine rite then attended Roman rite when he moved to Texas (no Byzantine rite in Tx until decades later)
    One time Our Lady of Walsingham in Houston hosted a Maronite rite Mass. very interesting with all the icons, rugs etc and the Mass in Arabic

  9. Geoffrey says:

    “The SSPX? They may be less likely than the Anglicans to come home. They think they are their own church now and have rebuffed every attempt at reconciliation.”

    Very true. And it was the traditional Anglicans/Episcopal who petitioned the Holy Father to return home to Rome. The SSPX has never done this; it is the Holy Father who is trying his hardest to get them to return home to Rome.

  10. Mrs. Bear says:

    Today in Hamilton!
    A letter from Bishop Crosby (Diocese of Hamilton, Ontario) concerning Kitchener-Waterloo Anglicans received into the Full Communion of the Catholic Church
    “For many years, groups of Anglicans repeatedly asked the Pope if it would be possible for them to become Catholics, while at the same time being allowed to keep their liturgical, musical, spiritual, and pastoral traditions, which had developed over the 500-year history of Anglicanism, and which they greatly valued. In November of 2009, in response to these requests, the Holy See, through the Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum Coetibus (“Groups of Anglicans”) and its accompanying norms, established a new structure within the Catholic Church to allow Anglicans who become Catholics to do just that.” (Archbishop Thomas Collins, Toronto)
    Within our Diocese of Hamilton, a small group of Anglicans has been meeting in the Kitchener-Waterloo area since 1996 in a community know as St. Edmund’s Anglican Catholic Church. This group of Anglicans has indicated their desire to be received into the Full Communion of the Catholic Church under the terms of Anglicanorum Coetibus. For several months they have been preparing for this by prayer and a period of instruction based on the Catechism of the Catholic Church.
    On January 1st, 2012, the Solemnity of Mary, the Mother of God, in the Cathedral of Christ the King, I, as Bishop of Hamilton, will receive these men and women into the Full Communion of the Catholic Church by the Profession of Faith and the Sacraments of Confirmation and Eucharist. The Mass will be celebrated according to the Anglican Use – a fully-authorized Catholic liturgy that maintains distinctive elements of the Anglican heritage of language, music, tradition and spirituality.
    From January 1st, these newly-received will be known as the Sodality of St. Edmund, King and Martyr, and will continue as an Anglican Use community within the Diocese of Hamilton. They will, in due time, become part of the Personal Ordinariate that is being erected in the United States. Until then, they will be served by Fr. William Foote as Chaplain.
    As Catholics, the members of the Sodality of St. Edmund will be subject to the Code of Canon Law and will fully embrace the teaching of the Catechism of the Catholic Church. We welcome them into the Roman Catholic Church, pray for them, and invite them to pray for us.
    Sincerely in Christ and Mary Immaculate,
    (Most Rev.) Douglas Crosby, OMI
    Bishop of Hamilton

  11. Sid says:

    Te Deum indeed! This is a day of great rejoicing for those of us who love the Anglican tradition. And I think that the Ordinariate will bring many folk in the southern USA into the Catholic Faith; Anglicans have been in Dixie since Jamestown.

  12. letchitsa1 says:

    Awesome news with which to start out the new year. Thanks be to God!

  13. Nun2OCDS says:

    As a former Episcopalian -( now Catholic for over 20 years) – what great cause for rejoicing. Pray that the rest of the year is this good.
    But … how will they observe their titular feast this year? Feb 22nd is Ash Wednesday! Maybe we should do penance to bring more into the fold.

  14. Centristian says:


    “The SSPX? They may be less likely than the Anglicans to come home. They think they are their own church now and have rebuffed every attempt at reconciliation. Even if there is a personal ordinariate for them, only a percentage will come home to Rome.”

    But Father Z merely says that they COULD have a personal ordinariate (like the priests of Campos, Brazil, who became the Personal Apostolic Administration of St. John Mary Vianney). I’m sure they could, if their position were not that Rome first needs to convert to Catholicism. That certainly would not have been the view of Anglicans leaving their state-confected church in order to join the authentic Church of Jesus Christ.

    In one case, you have adherents to a centuries-old schism now seeing the light and desiring to run to it, while being permited to preserve their English liturgical traditions (which are bloody well worth preserving, incidentally). On the other hand you have the expansion of a Catholic priestly fraternity that was suppressed but which refused to accept their suppression and continued operating in spite of their suppression, claiming that their bishop had no right to suppress them (a notion that Rome rejected).

    The current Pope, sympathetic to the traditionalism of the SSPX, wanted to let bygones be bygones and find a way to regularize them in a way that Paul VI absolutely refused to (Paul and Lefebvre had a huge blow-out that destroyed any chances of that). I get the impression, however, that Pope Benedict may have misunderstood that the SSPX had long ago begun to view itself as pretty much the remnant Church and that it therefore viewed the rest of the Catholic Church as a modernist “Newchurch” that was created by the Second Vatican Council. For the SSPX, it is no longer just a matter of attachment to the pre-Conciliar liturgy and traditional priestly formation; the scope of their concerns has expanded far beyond just those two items.

    With the Holy See and the SSPX you have a situation in which each is waiting for the other to convert, essentially. The Church of England, on the other hand, has never been in that position of waiting for Rome to convert to it. The Anglican Church never saw herself as the true Church vs. the false Church, but rather as the English Church vs. the Roman Church. Once an Anglican can get past the idea that Christ’s Church isn’t fragmented by a map but that it is truly one worldwide Church for all humanity under one shepherd, a reconciliation can happen.

    The SSPX, however, isn’t viewing itself as one part of the Catholic Church that needs to return to the whole; it isn’t limited to any geographical area. The SSPX views itself essentially as the universal remnant of the Universal Church. The SSPX, therefore, need the rest of us to convert in order that we be reconciled to them. That was never so with Anglicans, of course.

    Another difference is that Anglicans swim the Tiber as laity. Really, when you look at it, they are all laity converting, of course, as Anglican orders count for nothing. Anglican converts are all lay converts. As far as SSPX coming back, that would be a matter of all clergy…clergy not needing to convert to Catholicism, but clergy needing to be regularized and given a means by which they can have faculties and legitimately excercise their priestly ministries once again. There are no SSPX laity. Catholics who approach the SSPX at their chapels for their ministrations are just that: Catholics. They aren’t part of the SSPX, they belong to the Catholic Church, as indeed, do each of the disobedient clergymen who together style themselves the Society of St. Pius X.

    What the priests of Campos, Brazil needed that enabled them to be regularized was the freedom to excercise without hindrance the pre-Conciliar rites of the Church. For decades, the clergy worldwide were denied those freedoms. Once those freedoms were offered in the form of a personal ordinariate, however, that was all the priests of Campos needed in order to get right with the Holy See again. They never needed the Holy See to convert to them. With the SSPX, however, its a different story.

  15. irishgirl says:

    Regarding the new Anglican Ordinariates in both the USA (St. Peter’s Chair) and Canada (St. Edmund, King and Martyr), I say, ‘Te Deum Laudamus’! What wonderful news to begin the New Year!

  16. Denita says:

    The Father at St. Mary’s ( where I go to Latin Mass), has allowed an Episcopal parish that had been thrown out of their own church to use our sanctuary for their Masses. I happened upon the closing of their first one there. Very Traddie-like!

  17. Veronica says:


    This is something that should not be happening. Even though some of the high church Episcopalian services resemble the Catholic Mass, they are NOT valid Masses since they do not have a valid orders and therefore they do not have a valid Eucharist. Their service might resemble the form, the words, and even look like you say “very Traddie-like”, but there is no difference between that priest allowing this group of Episcopalians to celebrate their Sunday service in the church you attend to or allowing the Southern Baptist, Presbiterians or Methodists down the street to celebrate their services there.

    I live in a small town in the South. Right down the street where our Catholic parish is located, is the Episcopal church. All the Catholics that in the past got mad at the pastors in our Church, or those that for various reasons were under irregular situations, migrated to that church saying “it was the same”. They joined the Episcopal church in our town just because it “looked like” a Catholic Mass, but without all the hassle of some of the Sacraments (i.e. Confession).

    The fact is that Episcopalians are not in communion with the Catholic Church and should not be allowed to celebrate their services in a Catholic Church, in front of the Most Blessed Sacrament in a consecrated altar. This indifferentism shown by your pastor might look like an act of “good will” towards that community, but it is very dangerous and can create confusion and scandal among the faithful Catholics of your parish. Maybe somebody should go and talk to your pastor about this situation. As for that Episcopalian community, they should either come into full communion with the Catholic Chruch or contact another Protestant church in the area to celebrate their Sunday services there.

  18. anj says:

    A reply to Veronica:

    I believe that Denita is referring to St. Mary’s in Ft. Worth, TX. There, the church of St. Timothy, lead by Fr. Stainbrook, has received permission to meet and worship.


    It should be understood that the reason that they were kicked out of their church was because they have declared for the Ordinariate, and desired to bring their community into full communion with the Catholic church.

    Fr. Stainbrook is an Anglo-Papalist, and is indeed very “Traddie”, Anglo-Catholic style.

    Have a look at the photos at their old church, lest there be any doubt:

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