I am still studying the announcement from the Vatican about a new ordinate for Anglicans including whole dioceses and parishes seeking union with Rome. My first thought is that it represents a major change in strategy with regard to Anglican and Roman Catholic Relations. The Vatican has resisted for at least fifty years pleas of the sort that have given rise to this new provision. The Pastoral provision that preceeded it was very limited, circumscribed and low profile. This is a high profile and international gesture. This move represents a conviction that ecumenical relations between Rome and Canterbury cannot move ahead on a unified front and that Rome feels released to work with those who are ready for greater union now even if that means contributing to the break up of the Communion. It will I think have more traction in England than in this country. From the RC side it represents an extraordinary flexibility in an institution not known for its flexibility. It also has a subtext for the East that their clergy can be accepted in a scheme of organic union for they for the most part have a married priesthood and a celibate episcopate.
2 thoughts on “Anglican–Roman Catholic Relations”
My book on John Wesley discusses the Methodist relationship to Roman Catholicism. Wesley thought that the Catholics had more than required and that was a problem, but he held that they could be saved. Read more.
J. Robert (Bob) Ewbank’s book “John Wesley, Natural Man, and the ‘Isms’ has been published. The ‘Isms’ are Heathenism, Judaism, Deism, Roman Catholicism, Quakerism, and Mysticism. The questions being answered are: how does each of them differ from John Wesley’s idea of True Christianity, and what are the prospects for those holding these views being saved.
Written for the layperson as well as the scholar, there is a Study Guide in the back of the book to help individual or group study. The Guide has questions in the front, which are answered later in the Guide.
Bob has a B.A. from Baker University in Baldwin, Kansas and an M.A. from Garrett-Evangelical. He is currently Lay Leader of St. Mark UMC, in Mobile, AL.
Bishop Rueben P. Job of the United Methodist Church has written some kind words on the back cover.
Sam Royappa District Superintendent of the Coulee District in Wisconsin has recommended this book to his clergy and laity.
A review of the book has also been published in the October 15, 2009 copy of The Laity Link which is the newsletter of the Alabama-West Florida Conference Board of Laity.
The book is being used by one local Sunday School, divided into 14 sessions.
To find the book go on the internet to:
1. http://www.wipfandstock.com (Wipf and Stock) For your information, the book is $23.00 at bookstores, but at the web site it is only $18.40
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It is a HUGE shift – not merely in strategy but attitude. After all, the Apostolic Constitution is not a “Provision” (such as we saw under JPII) but an actual change to Canon Law (that is what an Apostolic Constitution effects).
I take this to mean that while there will be changes expected (are expected) of Anglicans coming under the authority of Rome, the Roman church realizes that it too will change in someways to accommodate such separated Brothers and Sisters.
Very interesting times.