Rorate Caeli

Levada to Traditional Anglican Communion

The Messenger, the official newsletter of the Traditional Anglican Communion (the communion of the Anglican Continuum which intends to proceed towards a corporate reunion with the Catholic Church) disclosed the above letter, signed by Cardinal Levada, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, on July 5 and received this morning. It also published a message of its superior leader, John Hepworth:

“My Dear Fathers, Brothers and Sisters,

It is my great pleasure to be able to attach a copy of a letter I received this morning (25 July 2008) from Cardinal Levada, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, via the Apostolic Nuncio in Australia. It is a letter of warmth and encouragement. I have responded, expressing my gratitude on behalf of "my brother bishops", reaffirming our determination to achieve the unity for which Jesus prayed with such intensity at the Last Supper, no matter what the personal cost this might mean in our discipleship.

This letter should encourage our entire Communion, and those friends who have been assisting us. It should also spur us to renewed prayer for the Holy Father, for Cardinal Levada and his staff at the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, and for all our clergy and people as we move to ever closer communion in Christ with the Holy See.

I am particularly thankful to the Cardinal Prefect for his generous mention of "corporate reunion", a pathway seldom travelled in the past, but essential for bringing about the plea of our Master to His Father "May they be completely one"’.


  1. Anonymous8:31 PM

    I just hope that the primary consideration in any delay to these negotiations is the good of souls, not the preservation of interreligious (and I use that word deliberately) friendships.

  2. So, we are one step closer...

  3. Anonymous9:03 PM

    This is taking forever....

    Greg Hessel in Arlington Diocese

  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

  5. Anonymous9:54 PM

    don't call us, we'll call you....

  6. Anonymous11:10 PM

    It is really quite interesting that this letter should come out now (during Lambeth) and I take it as does Archbishop Hepworth, as a hopeful sign. I do agree, though, that the situation with the worldwide Anglican Communion is now intruding on the process, as the CDF and other Roman dicasteries with competence have to reassess their approaches in light of Anglican developments. I am assuming that once it becomes clear from Lambeth that the AC is going Protestant more or less unequivocally, Rome will actually feel freer to move ahead with the TAC.

    Let us pray for a quick reunion, as I keep saying, "united not absobed".

  7. Anonymous12:29 AM

    My comments:

    1. The Cardinal's letter was dated 5th July, and yet the TAC Primate did
    not receive it until today. Immediately, the TAC Primate released it to the
    world. Clearly, the TAC wants to get on with it, whereas Rome is delaying.
    Why the delay? Well, we all know the answer to that. Cardinal Kasper the
    Clown and his troupe of heretics are trying to stop this initiative. The
    excuse is policy to be courteous to that conventicle of witches and
    druids assembled at Lambeth. I suppose that there is some sense to this.
    Rome does not want to look like a hungry wolf who wants to gobble up these
    plump prelates from beyond the Thames.

    2. Notice Archbishop Hepworth's expression "no matter what the personal
    cost". He is reiterating what he said over a year ago, that, while the married TAC
    bishops would like to be admitted to the episcopal dignity, they are
    prepared to accept the status of simple priests if need be. As Hepworth put
    it at that time, he would be prepared to retire "and go fishing". Hepworth
    is also making it very difficult here for Rome to reject the TAC's
    proposals. If the TAC bishops are prepared to make this sacrifice, how can
    Rome say no?

    3. In the Cardinal's letter, note the expression "serious attention" and
    then this clause: "As soon as the Congregation is in a position to respond
    more definitively concerning the proposals". The first expression is a
    'smoke signal', to use a North American metaphor. He's saying that he is taking this very seriously but can't say
    so yet. Why can't he say so? Because some agency in the curia has told him
    to delay delivery of a formal response given the "markedly more complex"
    situation in the Canterbury Communion of Clowns. In real English, the
    Cardinal is saying that he's been asked not to draft a response until the
    conventicle of lesbo Lambeth witches has adjourned. There will then be a
    'respectable interlude' so that it looks as if Rome is rubbing her chin in
    serious reflection while various Anglicans react to Lambeth. I expect a
    response to the letter on or before 9th October, the first anniversary of
    its sending.

    5. Why send this message now, then? It is to assure conservative Anglicans
    that they should wait for the TAC reconciliation and not seek other deals,
    entry into NewChurch as private individuals, and so on. It is also to
    dampen the initiatives of Archbishop Myers of the Anglican Use. This matter will be
    settled by Rome. It is also intended as a veiled and very mild threat (or,
    at least, the diplomatic appearance of a warning) to the outright
    homoheretics of Canterbury: stop or we'll break your gang in twain.

    This is extremely good news, then. It suggests an Anglican Uniate Church
    very soon, into which Forward in Faith and Ebbsfleet and so on can convert.
    Longer term, it could bring in GAFCON, the Third World Anglicans, and split
    Anglicanism in two. And it is not the Pope's doing at all but the
    Anglicans'. Nobody can blame the Pope for bringing in people who want to
    maintain their identity and cross the Tiber with it.


  8. Anonymous1:08 AM

    Excuse me, but who are these guys? Are they real Anglican bishops (sorry, I don't know how else to put it), accepted by the Anglican Communion? Or a Thuc-like group?

  9. It must have slipped His Eminence's mind that Anglicans don't have any bishops.

  10. Anonymous1:55 AM

    On the last two comments:

    (1) It is considered proper to call them bishops as a courtesy, but this does not mean that they are bishops in a sacramental sense.

    (2) I have heard, however, that this crop are bishops in a sacramental sense, since they got Old Catholic bishops to participate in their root consecratinons, used a 'fixed' ordinal, expressed a Catholic intent to sacrifice and so on.

    Still, the Church normally requires clear proof. But I would say that they are more likely to be bishops than the lot from the regular Canterbury Communion.

    3. Who are they? Up to 400,000 Anglicans who broke with the Canterbury Communion as a united body in 1991. They are composed of twelve national bodies (or fourteen now, as the Congo and Zimbabwe are late additions), the oldest of which broke from Canterbury in 1976. They broke away because they refused to accept women's ordination. They also refuse to accept inverted marriage. Most of them are 'Anglo-Catholics', ritualist Anglicans.

    They have really accepted all Catholic teaching now. The only sticking point is that they have married bishops. But their Primate, John Hepworth, has signalled that, if need be, their 'bishops' will accept rank as priests so that the Pope can promote to bishop unmarried priests from among them.

    They are seeking to be the first uniate Western Catholic Church. In my considered view, they will get this, probably by October. This is the logical way to bring in the conservatives from the Church of England, those who presently reject 'bishopettes' and inverted marriages. These new converts, led by the Church of England Bishop of Ebbsfleet and ten other Church of England bishops, could simply cross over into a uniate TAC (Traditional Anglican Church) under the Pope. This is the way to go. In the near future, the leader of the Third World Anglicans (GAFCON) will probably bring in about one-third of the world's Anglicans.

    The Anglican Use in the U.S.A. is definitely NOT the way to go. A prelature for the recent Church of Englanders under a Catholic bishop in England is also definiately not the way to go.

    The Holy Father will have to decide if he'll let them keep their married bishops. They will accept his decision on this.

    They will get to keep most of their Anglican traditions but must submit to an acceptable Eucharistic Liturgy (already achieved) and the rule on confessing sins once a year, and the rule against divorce & re-marriage. These are no longer stumbling-block. They will have to 'lose' St. Charles the Martyr but might be able to 'keep' King St. Henry VI.


    P.S. Most of the TAC people are in India and Pakistan. They have other churches in Canada, the U.S.A., Latin America, the U.K., Ireland, Australia, Japan, South Africa - Botswana - Zimbabwe, Zambia, and the Congo. They have a single parish in New Zealand under their Aussie Church.

    I know a good deal about them because one of their priests used to the local Chairman of the Monarchist League of Canada, of which I have been a long-standing member. We have our meetings in their basement. They are really Catholic. They even have a confessional and the crucifix with the corpus on it, etcetera. I've seen their church upstairs and they even have side-altars.


  11. Anonymous3:25 AM

    See also the solemn recitation of The Angelus by Bishop Mercer and others in Portsmouth, at The Messenger's web site as follows:

    The cantor is a little off key, but on the whole very impressive, and perhaps the more so because obviously not a paid professional performance. Note that they add, after the regular Angelus prayers, the prayer for the conversion of England, the old collect after low mass (O God our refuge and our strength"), the prayer to St Michael, and the prayer for dead.

  12. Anonymous6:05 AM

    Whether you agree with it or not,
    the Thuc line of bishops are, unlike the "Anglican bihops", very real. Illicit but real. That is what I was told by a retired former professor of history of our local seminary who follows apostolic succession as a hobby.

    A.M. LaPietra

  13. Anonymous9:16 AM

    Thank you, Mr. Perkins for the positive comments. I am heartened to see opinions on the traditional Roman Catholic side coming up with something better than a cracked gramophone record!

    I too may be "going sailing" this coming October if the Church has no need for me as a priest - but who knows....?

    Fr. Anthony, TAC chaplain in France

  14. Anonymous9:33 AM

    to the honourable Canadian subject of Her Majesty Queen Elisabeth II, P.K.T.P., from Alsaticus

    I'm always admirative of the quality of your precise analysis of documents. However it seems that the tone of the CDF letter and the tone of TAC primate's response are obviously at odds. Cardinal Levada is expressing caution and proposing ... delays when Bp Hepworth is singing "Exultate, jubilate". Cold feet on the Levada side, radiant joy on the other : it's rather weird.

    A possible explanation of this blatant contradiction could be that Bp Hepworth has received more than this July 5 dated letter and more substantial assurance after the Lambeth Conference will have definitely sealed the radical protestantism of the Anglican "Communion".

    It is however true that "corporate reunion" is a capital expression : it goes back to "unionism", the doctrine Rome has supported from Leo XIII to Vatican II, by contrast to ecumenism as understood by cardinal Kasper. The Vatican II decree, Unitatis redintegratio, and its brother decree Orientalis Ecclesiarum are not by the way rejecting the unionist approach, contrary to what is frequently said, for example in the "Balamand declaration". We have to remember both decrees were discussed and voted together in 1964.

    "Corporate reunion" is not a "path seldom travelled in the past" ! It is the usual path travelled with Eastern Churches, beginning with the Florence council of XVth, the 1596 Brest union which gave birth to the present Greek-Catholic Ukrainian Church, creations of Armenian Catholic and Coptic Catholic patriarchates etc.
    Bp Hepworth has still to learn some Catholic Church history chapters. The difficulties he is facing with some cold feet Roman officials, probably outside CDF, are not coming from "in the past" but ... after Kasperian ecumenism reinterpretation of Vatican II. Though His Eminence, with his compatriot on the See of Peter, is showing much more openness to Tradition than before. We have to be honest with post-2005 cardinal Kasper.

    Last observation, I am noticing the difference between the (precarious) dialogue with FSSPX and dialogue with TAC. Some websites are always mixing up the two but the difference of treatment is crystal-clear. FSSPX is immediately proposed a canonical status and given various guaranties when TAC is left in incertitude.
    Curiously with TAC, canonical and dsciplinary questions seem a bigger problem than with SSPX ; and as a paradox, SSPX is objecting doctrinal problems. So the analogy SSPX/TAC has its strong limits.

  15. Anonymous1:37 PM

    Mr. Perkins,

    I quite agree with everything you are saying. As to the structure of the reunion, I think that if a uniate church is what is really being sought, that in itself may be the cause of delay, as one gathers from sources such as William Oddie's "The Roman Option" that the Curia does not like the idea of any new uniate churches at all.

    As a fairly long-time Anglican Use parishioner, I also have to agree with your comment that the AU is not the way for the TAC to go. For all its many good features, the AU has suffered all along from the fact that it only works when the local ordinary is willing to actively promote it. This in practice has meant that only the current four, or maybe five (I don't know quite how the Boston "community" is doing) parishes or "communities" are really active, while other groups exist in a state of seemingly perpetual petitioning for establishment.

    The individual Episcopalian clergyman converting to Catholicism without a significant number of his parishioners trailing along (a very rare thing) simply is sucked into the "regular" Roman system and becomes of necessity entirely Novus ordo bowdlerized. This is what has happened to all but a few of the oft-cited 100+ married clergy converts who have been reordained. No doubt they are fine men doing good work, but they are effectively lost to any Anglican-ethos based parish or structure.

    One other rather hopeful thing was Archbishop Myers' recent address to the Anglican Use conference (available on their web site) in which he seems to be locating the Pastoral Provision clearly in the sector of individual or small group conversions, without suggesting that they may seek to play a role in larger corporate reunion matters (see his distinction, which seems to be based on Unitatis Redintegratio, between individual conversions and ecumenism proper). Given that the PP office seems to have no real enthusiasm for the kind of large scale corporate reunion the TAC seeks, this would be all to the good. Interestingly, Abp Myers also makes some very good statements about the need to recognize the legitimate spiritual and liturgical patrimony of Anglicanism, quoting Paul VI to the same effect.

    We can only pray that all the obstacles in Rome will be overcome, and soon. History shows that the longer these things are dragged out, the more likely it is that no result will occur. It is said that Paul VI was ready to sign a document creating a structure for incoming Anglicans, which document had been drafted and finally vetted as ready for signature, but the Pope died before being able to sign. They say that copies of the document are still held in various peoples' files (and that Abp Myers has seen it), for what it's worth.

    Lastly, one can only have great admiration for the spirit of sacrifice which Abp Hepworth, Father Anthony and others of the TAC episcopate and clergy have demonstrated. If Rome misses the chance to enlist such good men in the Roman legions going out to meet the foe, it will be a great tragedy. Perhaps the Aneglus and those prayers said by Bishop Mercer after it should be added to our own prayer rules for this very important cause.

  16. Woody Jones said: I am assuming that once it becomes clear from Lambeth that the AC is going Protestant more or less unequivocally, Rome will actually feel freer to move ahead with the TAC.

    In point of fact, the Anglicans "went Protestant" in the 1500s -- though many Anglicans don't like to think of it in those terms. What we've been seeing over the past century or more is not a "catholic" denomination that has been going Protestant, but a Protestant denomination that has been sliding out of any semblance of Christianity at all. That's why there have been so many "continuing" and "traditional" Anglican groups forming in recent decades -- as the Anglican Communion slides further from Christianity, Anglicans who wish to retain Christian faith have had to distance or sever themselves from the Anglican Communion. The latest crisis over women bishops and approval of homosexuality is making it evident that the Anglican Communion as a whole will never be reconciled with the Catholic Church, but large numbers of Anglicans can and, the Lord willing, will be accepted, hopefully corporately. I pray the Church arrives at a suitable and just accommodation for the TAC and groups like it.

  17. Anonymous6:14 PM

    What a colossal waste of time. The illogical, idiotic Anglican Communion is pandered to by a Roman Catholic Cardinal. Ecumenism is such garbage.

  18. Anonymous8:35 PM

    I find that the last several comments are excellent. Let us consider the situation more closely. The TAC proposes what is, in my view, the ideal solution to the problem: the first Western uniate church. By the way, uniatism was not born in 1595 because the Italo-Albanians have always been a uniate church in an unbroken line. (And I love the Italo-Albanians, who hale from Sicily and Calabria. They have only two churches in North America and one of them is at Las Vegas! What do Sicilians and Vegas have in common? Oh, I think it's hilarious. I imagine faithful there in dark suits, fedoras, bulges under their breast pockets, deep voices. But enough.)

    Anyway, the TAC proposed the ideal solution but then matters were complicated by events in the Canterbury Communion. Now, remember, The TAC as an international body goes back to 1991, and member bodies in it were founded in 1977. It has long been separated from the Canterbury druids and feminazi clowns. But Anglicans, being English, are a pusillanimous lot, and most conservative Anglicans stuck with Canterbury and simply tried to ignore the problems. They realised the 'truth', which is that the buildings and their culture are far more important than the faith, and I must say that we do want to get our hands on Lambeth Palace one day. It has a superb collection of manuscripts and the finest stock of Burmese first-leaf tea anywhere. Who needs Christ if you have Burmese first-leaf? (yes, I'm an avid tea drinker)

    Well, conservative Anglicans can ignore their witches and druids no longer. First priestesses, now bishopettes, a sodomite bishop in New Hampshire, a rite of inverted marriage in Canada, and the inverted marriage of two Church of England ministers, presided over by a third, and not disciplined by the Anglican Bishop of London or by Archdruid Williams. (By the way, when a similar event occurred in the R.O.C., the Russian bishop had the church demolished, the topsoil incinerated, and the rest of the land sown with salt. That is the reaction of a real Christian to sodomy.)

    Now, suddenly, Bishop Burnham of Ebbsfleet and ten other C. of E. bishops want to cross the Tiber. 1,300 C. of E. ministers wish to come with them. Burham alone superintends 120 parishes and may be able to bring many of his laics along with him. On the other hand, the Forward in Faith leader advises caution, and the other conservative 'flying bishop' of Richborough does likewise.

    On the Roman side, some suggest the disastrous idea of putting all these new potential converts under a personal jurisdiction of some sort, such as the Campos structure. The idiots in the press keep saying 'prelature', which is the wrong title: a territorial prelature is a missionary structure and a personal prelature cannot have lay subjects. More likely, it would be a personal apostolic administration (the Campos structure) put under a Latin Catholic bishop from the hierarchy of England & Wales. Bishops can govern more than one diocese; they can have secondary appointments (as does Bishop Papamanolis, in Greece, for example).

    This is a very bad idea. The Latin Bishops of England and Wales are liberals who have no understanding of Anglican customs, culture or tradition. Moreover, most of these bishops are thoroughgoing liberals, whereas the newcomers are conservatives and traditionalists. Not good chemistry.

    Archbishop Myers pops up to herald the A.U. Another mistake for the reasons I've already given.

    Unfortunately for the œcumenist liberals at Rome, the timing of the Church of England crisis could not be worse. It is happening while the TAC proposal is on the table. And Hepworth is really irritating said liberals because he is saying that he will take a uniate church on any terms the Pope demands. In other words, he's making it impossible for Kasper to block the deal. And Kasper is over 75 and running out of time. God does indeed move in mysterious ways.

    The obvious solution is to reconcile the TAC, with its tiny organisation in England (about 20 parishes under a vicar-general) and then let this huge number of conservative Church of Englanders join that tiny part of the TAC. Suddenly, the bishop-less TAC for England (it has bishops in most of its national bodies but not for the U.K., Ireland, the Congo, or Zimbabwe) would get up to eleven shiny new bishops and 1,300 priests to add to the 20 or so it now has 1,300 + 20 = 1,320! (Oh, this is delicious! It is a coup against the liberals-on-Thames and the liberals-on-Tiber!

    Rome is now dragging her feet for two reasons. First, the Pope, being a diplomat, does not wish to offend the warlocks and druids meeting at Canterbury. He'd be polite to them even if they were resolving to worship Satan directly. For this reason, he will wait until after their Lambeth Conventicle closes on 3rd August, and after an interlude, to signal that he is not a hungry Roman wolf anxious to gobble them up. A "more definitive" reaction to the TAC proposal may come by 9th October, then, the first anniversary of their proposal. By the way, it is reported that God has attacked the Lambeth Conventicle with a heat wave at a time when they can't affort air conditioners. He is trying to remind them of some spiritual fires to come. Not the fires of disordered passion but the flames which are never quenched.

    More seriously, the Pope is delaying because he does not want to imply that he is trying to poach Anglican souls. He figures that conservative Anglicans are more likely to convert if he looks more like a welcoming mother and less like panzerpope.

    Second, the Kasperites and other liberals in the Roman Church are desperately trying to save the Canterbury Communion because they are themselves crypto-Protestants who privately agree with inverted marriage and bishopettes, not to mention abortion and all other manner of evil, and they hope to foist these same sins on the Catholic Church as soon as possible (which will not be in their lifetimes: they know that). Murphy-O'Connor, of Fr. Michael Hill fame, is at Lambeth as a guest blathering on about the 'heady' days of the A.R.C.I.C. 'landmark' deals. Once he collapses from the heat there, we can catch his fainting body in a wheelchair and whisk this has-been away to imprison him in the nursing home where he belongs. It is just risible that this man is continuing to drone on about eventual union between a Gene Robinson Anglicanism and Rome. How these people love themselves! They'd do anything to avoid losing face.

    The Kasperites in the Roman Church and the Robinsonites in the Canterbury Conventicle are both worried sick that (1) thousands of Church of Englanders will cross into a uniate TAC under the Pope, where they will have the best of possible worlds liturgically, and into which Canterbury Anglicans will slowly bleed; and (2) that GAFCON, the Third World Anglicans, will join a uniate TAC within five years, bringing one-third of the world's Anglicans with them. This second event would lead to the eclipse of the Canterbury Communion of Clowns. Why? Because they are dying off in the rich countries, thanks to contraception, and are only growing in places such as Nigeria, from whence the GAFCON leader, Archbishop Akinola hales. They have 18 million Anglicans in Nigeria alone. In the Dominion of Canada, the far-left Anglican Church is losing 30,000 members every year, while immigration is increasing our population by at least 200,000 a year. The writing is on the wall. They've only kept the buildings for so long because they paid for them in the 1920s.

    I'm not sure how the property dispute will work itself out in England. We should want to get our hands on all the good buildings, or as many of them as we can. It is an abomination to imagine that the places where generations of good Anglicans were Baptized may become the sites of inverted marriage and other sacrileges. But the Church of England is a creature of the State, and Parliament can override the feminazis who run the C. of E. Parliament respects votes and voters. It is possible that each parish might be able to decide to join a uniate TAC and keep exclusive (in some cases) or shared (in other cases) use of the property. Consider the sitaution in France, where the Church is not a creature of the state but the churches are the property of the State.

    In the U.S.A., courts in Virginia are awarding the property to the parishes and the Schori Hag is going apoplectic trying to stop it. Her organisation of secular humanists and lesbo nature-worshippers is dissolving right before her eyes, just like the witch in the Wizard of Oz, except these crones dissolve when you douse them with holy water. In Canada, the sitaution seems to favour the outright homo-heretics. Interesting developments all 'round.

    Could anyone here comment on the property situation for England? Will the witches and druids throw the Anglo-Catholics out of their parish churches if said Anglo-Catholics reconcile with a uniate TAC?

    Peter Karl T. Perkins
    Victoria, Canada

  19. Anonymous12:36 AM

    Let's see what Rome will do to minister the sacrament of order to anglicans.....let's see...

  20. Anonymous5:51 AM

    i don't think you can make a parallel between apostolic churches and protestant anglican churches becoming catholic. for one, protestants are heretics and broke away from the latin rite. eastern churches are schismatic. therefore, anglo-catholicism doesn't have apostolic origins as do the "uniate" eastern churches.

    anglicans do not represent a legitimate apostolic tradition. there were three than there can only be provisions for the communities who convert en mass such as the anglican use and not a establishment of a distinct anglican rite withing the catholic church.

    i think they should ask to celebrate the sarum liturgy. perhaps then they can mantain a true apostolic anglo catholic church such as there was in the 16th century.

  21. Anonymous10:17 AM

    This wretched argument goes on and on and on when there should be no argument at all. It is extremely unlikely that anything will come of the 'negotiations' between the CDF and the self-confected TAC. Even less will come of the Bishop of Ebbsfleet's impulsive declaration.

    The reality is that Anglicans who become Catholics are willing and eager to embrace the Church as it is, not a form of the Church modified to suit what they have left. All attempts to tinker a compromise are flawed from the start and will get nowhere.

  22. Anonymous1:42 PM

    A couple of posts mention 'October' as the agreement date for the TAC. Why?

  23. To the many who have expressed concern over what they see as frustrating delays in this process:

    I just want to remind everyone that this is the Vatican of Benedict XVI. In many ways it is becoming more and more like the Vatican of the preconcilliar church. Which is to say nothing happens quickly. This Pope is extremely deliberate in his actions. Even the most utterly routine documents routinely come out much later than expected. There is a joke in Rome that any day now the Holy See will publish its calendar for 2007.

    I for one find this refreshing. This schism has been in place for over four centuries. It need not be ended in a fortnight. It is far better to take the time to do something right, than have to go back and fix a mistake later on. If you want evidence to that effect; how much time did a committee spend writing a new liturgy for the Western Church to replace one that had developed organically over 1500 yrs?

    Just some food for thought.


  24. Anonymous10:22 PM

    While I think that Elmwood makes excellent points, I can't support his primary conclusion.

    He makes a point most of us have either missed or not concentrated on: Anglo-Catholics do not have a legitimate tradition. That's quite so: they don't have a tradition in the proper ecclesial sense, as the Eastern churches have.

    They do have a tradition in the more general sense of that term.

    It is true that the Eastern Orthodox are schismatic. What is rarely emphasised is that, de facto, they are also heretical. Why? It is because they reject the infallible declaration from Vatican I of the Pope's primacy of jurisdiction. Oddly, they don't reject (or embrace) papal infallibility, but do reject a primacy of authority. And that makes then heretics, even if we'd rather not say so today.

    The Church is flexible in regard to pastoral solicitude, and there is no reason why she must reject a uniate Anglican Church just because the Anglican tradition is not tradition in a proper ecclesial sense. Arguably, one could say the same about the Maronites, and yet they have a uniate church.


  25. Anonymous10:41 PM

    I think that those expressing the belief that nothing will come of this are mistaken, although their position is certainly understandable, given all the negotiations with Anglicans in the past. John, the last poster, is correct, I think. But the delay is not owing merely to this Pope's return to a pre-conciliar speed. After all, J.P. II took six years just to get to the 1984 Indult, and then another four just to make it stick.

    I have been following this situation very closely for some time. The Pope will definitely make an offer to the TAC and the TAC will accept it. I guarantee it. The question is one of content and timing.

    The Holy See is delaying now because the Pope does not want to create the impression that he is trying to destroy Anglicanism by offering conservative Anglicans a way out of their Communion. Instead, he is going to wait until the smoke has cleared and the disintegration of their Communion is a foregone conclusion. Then nobody can accuse him of mercenary motives, or whatever.

    Hence there cannot be an offer from Rome until their international Lambeth Conference closes on 3rd August. After that, the Pope may wish to wait some time so that various Anglican parties can try to resolve some of their differences in camera.

    9th October, 2007, was the date the TAC delivered its proposal to Rome. Rome likes symbolic dates, so we might see a response on that day, or even earlier.

    As for Burnham of Ebbsfleet, his best course is to enter the Church with his followers (up to 120 entire parishes) by entering the TAC. He can do this either before or after the reunion of the TAC with Rome. Keep in mind that there are 10 other Church of England bishops and 1,300 of their priests who want to do likewise. 800 have even pledged to cross the Tiber under such an arrangement.

    The reason we should support such initiatives is that it is likely to bring across far more of them. The salvation of souls is the highest law. If GAFCON, the Third World Anglican group, joins a uniate TAC in, say, five years, we can greatly increase the Church in souls, to the greater glory of God.

    It is frustrating to get a 'please be patient' letter from Cardinal Levada after nine months. Had he been a woman, he could have brought a new baby into the world in that time! But I think we should be asking why he is sending a letter at all. The real message is this: 'We can't say yes today because of the brouhaha in the Church of England. But don't lose hope: it's coming soon.'

    Had Rome wanted to say 'no' there would be no reason not to say it.


  26. "Arguably, one could say the same about the Maronites, and yet they have a uniate church."

    Following the conquest of Eastern Christendom outside of Anatolia and Europe by the Muslims, and the establishment of secured lines of control between Islamic Caliphs and Byzantine Emperors, little was heard from the Maronites for 400 years. Secure in their mountain fortresses, It was not until the Crusader Raymond of Toulouse on his way to conquer Jerusalem in the first Crusade that the Maronites were re-discovered in the mountains near Tripoli, Lebanon.

    The Maronites have a tradition going back to Saint Maron, but contact with the christians in those areas were lost because of islamic invasions.. They were never part of the great schism with constantinople

    The Catholic Church in England ceased to exist first in 1534, was reconciled in 1553 under Mary I and finally ceased to exist in 1559 when England became Protestant. The Catholic Church of England was recreated when Pope Pius IX wrote his papal bull Universalis Ecclesiae and reestablish the british catholic hierachy.

    The Oxford Movement and their descandents the Anglo Catholics aren't a continuation of the Catholic Tradition from before reformation. Because the tradition from before the reformation recognized Papal Primacy and the teaching of the Magisterium and they do not. Even if they are more converative and catholic than the current liberal hierachy in the Catholic Church of England and Wales. The Catholic Church of England was reestablished in 1850 and is a continuation of the Catholic Tradition. The Anglo Catholic have no claim whatsoever on this tradition.

    M. Pedersen

  27. Anonymous5:20 AM

    Dear Mr. Pederson:

    I agree mostly with your last paragraph (especially as I have some recusant ancestors). The Church in England never disappeared entirely, even if it became mission territory for periods. But I agree with your contention that the Anglo-Catholics have no claim of succession as the Church in England; and that they do not have a legitimate tradition in the proper ecclesial sense.

    They do have a tradition in the general sense of that term. This does not necessarily entitle them to uniate status; but there is no rule forbidding it.

    To return to the Maronites, some scholars believe they are the descendants of a heresy but were later reconciled. The heresy was clearly not monophysitism (that of the Syrians, Armenians, Copts) but monothelitism. The monothelites definitely existed but disappeared.

    I suppose you have a point in that there is no certainty that the Maronites are former monthelites (and, in fact, they tend to dislike the implication).

    Rome may make an excepton for the TAC people and allow them uniate status, which is what they have petitioned for. The grounds are that this is the surest way to ensure their salvation. Salus animarum lex suprema est.


  28. Anonymous9:01 AM

    In response to the question of whether a solution for the TAC has to come from a "legitimate tradition" or a "pastoral need", I should add one or two things.

    I think a good analogy of all this is the regularization of the Campos group by John Paul II. The bishop was consecrated by the Society of St. Pius X bishops and was excommunicated as a Roman Catholic.

    I once knew in Rome a deacon who had left the Society of St. Pius X in about 1983 and was under the care of a Roman seminary rector. The CDF judged him to be irregular in terms of canon law and that therefore his situation was without any possibility of a solution: he was to be accepted back into regularity only as a layman. That’s what the law says – for example canons 1383, 1384 of the 1983 Code. Someone ordained illegitimately and who exercises that order is assimilated to an impostor. Therefore he is irregular.

    You put a foot wrong and you’re done for. However, I was taught by our canon law professor at university that we are not dealing with some medieval system of criminal law, but the putting into practice of ecclesiology. The Church’s economy is based on hope and mercy. No law should ever remove all hope. Of course to be forgiven, one needs to repent and make reparation – but sometimes a crime is committed for motives of conscience, or because a man was deliberately put into a situation of no-hope.

    The Campos group was not a territorial diocese, but neither is any “exempt” (exempt from the authority of the local bishop but depending directly on Rome) religious order. Nor is Opus Dei. Nor are auxiliary and coadjutor bishops, or bishops “in partibus infidelium”. All these are abuses in terms of strict ecclesiology. They are for the most part pastoral solutions.

    In pastoral and canonical matters, Rome can innovate and make situations for the pastoral need. We Anglicans could be sent away and told that individual conversion is the only way and that we have nothing to offer the Church either in terms of theology, spirituality or culture. Conform or die. Some Roman Catholics seem to relish the idea, forgetting that Rome could quash their own aspirations like Paul VI in 1976 top Archbishop Lefebvre. “Give us your property and money and we’ll see”. The crocodile teeth were really sharpened on that day!

    My point is that, despite all the sour grapes and objections flying around, that we are not some kind of patriarchate founded by the Council in the Bicycle Shed of 376, but a community of non-Roman Catholic Christians who has come together to converge into communion with the See of Saint Peter with characteristics that are as worthy and noble as the Byzantine Liturgy of the oriental Uniates. We may be “artificial” and have defects, but Rome can repair and forgive anything if they deem that is necessary for a pastoral solution.

    Thus, Rome grants dispensations from celibacy, and even from serious irregularities when a greater good comes out of it. Normally a man who has been married after his ordination is irregular (unless “laicized”), but it is possible to grant him a special dispensation. (Rome can also allow men who have committed serious crimes to continue in office – but I won’t go into that one.) If Rome wants to create some kind of an Anglican Uniate structure, it will. They don’t need precedents – they just legislate, as they have done for centuries. Just phone the “Department of Creative Innovations” behind the Sistine Chapel smokestack!

    Pope Pius V, when he “codified” the Roman Mass in 1570, issued a complete innovation. Liturgy was subject to custom and tradition – but he made it subject to Papal legislation, albeit to protect it from abuse by ignorant clergy, but this was an innovation.

    I don’t know what will happen, if anything will happen. Rome could go bureaucratic and just not care as parish churches close down and the people becomes more and more indifferent, since they are spiritually starved. If the Church cannot wake up to pastoral needs and reality, then it deserves to get what is coming from the “politically correct” Left and the secular humanists, depending on what they are prepared to share with the Muslims. Looking at the evidence, Pope Benedict XVI does care and knows his Pontificate is a one-shot deal.

    We can only wait and see before each of us knows what our conscience requires of us. None of us knows apart from a handful of our Bishops who have been to Rome with the famous letter of last October.

    The idea comes into my head. Would it not be better to talk, fudge and waffle indefinitely? Would not our “intention” to be in communion with Rome do, whilst we continue to be separate and do our own thing? Is not Bishop Fellay doing the same thing – talking, fudging and waffling? I think is this were the case, our Archbishop would not have received such a letter. Normally, Rome does not reply to letters and tells you to eat cake if you do not have any bread.

    Something is going on – and for the moment it is the Lambeth Conference and the auto-destruction of the Canterbury Communion. And don’t gloat – because with it will go the credibility of the whole Christian faith for most English people!

    Rome knows, and they know all about Apostolicae Curae, traditionalist bigotry, canonical jurisprudence and all possible objections. The Vatican is the best-informed agency in the world – MI5, the CIA, the Mossad and the whole lot have not a patch on the Vatican’s information service. They know everything. They play dumb and “out of touch”, but they would have been annihilated by Hitler if that were the case.

    On one side, what is going to be useful to them? Obviously, regenerate European and American Catholicism to bring the money rolling in! And also, they are mostly Christians and want to help others in need, remembering that they are priests and souls are calling out to them.

    Which good parish priest would not go out and assist a dying soul, even at night?

    Fr. Anthony, TAC chaplain

  29. First of all i can't see how The "already besieged by heterodoxy and liberals" Latin Church in England and Wales benefits from all these "Anglo Catholics" becoming uniate(Would that mean sui juris aswell?) and not a part of the already established latin rite church hierachy.

    Peolpe are saying they would boost the latin church with "conservatism and good liturgy". But the Eastern Rite Catholic Churches are also Uniate have a sense of the sacred and good liturgy and i don't see them contribute with anything in the "fight" to regain tradition and the sacred in the latin rite church. Therefore i ask what would a "Anglo" cahtolic uniate rite church contribute with to the latin rite churh?

    M. Pedersen

  30. Anonymous6:36 PM

    In response to DanishCatholic, I would say that the TAC people have a good will and want to be Catholic but that they also wish to preserve customs which are dear to their hearts. If you tell them to enter the Latin Church as individuals, those who do will feel unconnected and disconsolate. People live their faith through its forms. The law of prayer is the law of belief.

    Given that they constitue a distinct community, it is better for them if we assess the extent to which the prayers and forms of that community conform to the Catholic Faith. If they mostly or entirely do, it is pastorally good to recognise and affirm that, requiring the minimun number of changes, that minmum being possibly as low as zero at the time of entry (I don't think it's zero, though: the prayperbook must go in favour of the Anglican Missal.)

    What will content people contribute to the entire Church? A great deal of zeal. What will disconsolate and confused people contribute? Much less, and they might even harbour resentment, particularly when faced with a 'nice' N.O.M.

    I am shocked at some of the lack of charity of some fellow Catholics on this blog. Most of the TAC people I've met (and I've met a few through the Monarchist League), are more Catholic in their outlook than are most N.O. attenders. We need these people, and we need to respect the good they can bring corporately.

    Their Primate has asked to be taken as they are but is willing to come into the Church corporately under any conditions the Pope may wish to impose, regardless of the personal cost to him and his fellow prelates. That offer deserves respect and due consideration. Instead, they are getting delay from Cardinal Levada. Delay is deadlier than denial.


  31. Anonymous7:04 PM

    Mr. Perkins,

    I'm curious why you think the GAFCON crowd would join the Catholic Church, even in a uniate set-up. My impression of Akinola of Nigeria, Orombi of Uganda, et al, is that they are serious Christians, but quite frankly far from Catholic. Reading Luke Orombi's First Things article "What is Anglicanism?" last year I was reminded how much Evangelical Anglicans are really Protestant, with all of the Sola Scriptura baggage and all. I also don't think many of them have problems with women's ordination.

    Fr. Dwight Longenecker and others have solidified this impression of mine in their writings and conversation.

    Perhaps others with more information about the Anglican scene could comment.

  32. Anonymous7:53 PM

    Questions to Fr. Anthony:

    Dear Fr. Anthony:

    Some questions for you.

    (1) Why, do you think, does not Bishop Burnham of Ebbsfleet simply not join the Traditional Church of England (the TAC church in England)? It has no bishop but only a vicar-general right now. Burnham could bring in his entire lot (or as many of them as would come) prior to a reunion with Rome. Why wait for Rome? It's like waiting for grass to grow.

    (2) What would it take for the TAC to 'fix' its orders so that nobody in the Roman curia could deny them? Take the typical example a TAC priest who was ordained deacon and then priest and then consecrated bishop in the Anglican Church of Canada (say) prior to 1975. Then he left the A.C.C. before it simulated the ordination of a woman in 1976, and then he joined the Anglican-Catholic Church of Canada, which later became a founding member of the TAC.

    I realise that the situation of clerics varies in the TAC. What I am wondering is if the TAC has 'fixed' all its orders by including Old Catholic or Polish National Catholic co-consecrators, and so on.

    As we both know, Rome must accept the validity of the priesthood of Archbishop Hepworth, but she can doubt his episcopate. Suppose your Primate, Archbishop Hepworth, were to invite Old Catholic or Eastern Orthodox or Polish Catholic bishops to participate in a conditional ordination of himself to the episcopate. They use the Sarum or Roman Ordinals in Latin and they invite Roman priests to be present as witnesses.

    Archbishop Hepworth and these guests could then do the same thing for, say, several other TAC bishops (e.g. Mercer, Wilkinson, Prakash, Peter, Gill, Nona, Langberg, Garcia, Moyer, Falk), ordaining them conditionally, where necessary to all three orders or the number needed to resolve Roman doubts. The first seven TAC bishops could then use the Sarum Ordinal to 'do' the remaining TAC bishops. Then these bishops would use the Sarum Ordinal conditionally to ordain the priests and deacons. All ordinations sub conditione would be done in the presence of Roman priests as witnesses.

    Why not do this? It would force Rome to admit that she was dealing with real clerics at all levels. It would also force her to recognise the TAC's married bishops. Rome might refuse to allow them to function as bishops but this would seem a little silly.

    The best course, I think, is for the TAC to make certain all its prelates' and other clerics' orders. After that, it could enact a rule that, in future, only unmarried men could proceed to the episcopate (with the exception, though, of transferring Anglican bishops seeking conditional ordination upon entry). Rome would probably celebrate that. But if you wait for Rome to impose such a solution, we could all die of old age first. These delays help our enemies; they help the pagans in the Canterbury Communion.


  33. Fr Anthony,
    First let me say how good it is to see you posting online. It has been sometime since we corresponded. I pray that you and yours are well.

    To the point I think you were attempting to make with respect to canon law and the reception of the Bishop of Campos. I think the term you are seeking is one that is more common among us Orthodox. It is Oikonomia or economy. I think the Latin version is dispentia (the many Latinists here will correct me if I am wrong) which in English is simply dispensation. The principal is a simple one. Any law that is of human origin can have exceptions.

    In Orthodoxy economy is routinely applied for pastoral reasons in a wide range of matters. Of course it is far less frequently applied in others. These are judgment calls usually left to competent authority.

    I would assume that any relief from the strictures of the canons you mentioned for the unfortunate deacon would have to come from the very top. But the Pope bottom lined the Code of Canon Law and can make whatever exceptions he wants. (Famous line from a rather risque comedy film of the 70's; "It's good to be the king!")

    In Orthodoxy the usual rule is that mercy should be extended wherever it is possible to do so without causing grave scandal or some other serious harm. When the law ceases to be pastoral in its end and becomes an end unto itself, it is time to take a hard look at the situation.

    Yours in ICXC

  34. Anonymous11:55 PM

    To Mr. Deavel:

    I agree with you that the GAFCON crowd are more inclined to be evangelical and Protestant, which is why I don't think they will come in immediately.

    But I do think that they would come into the TAC eventually. I recall a statement I saw on-line a few years ago in which Abp. Akinola said that he'd come into the TAC if the TAC went into Rome as a uniate church.

    It is true that the TAC is mostly Anglo-Catholic, but not entirely, and not on principle. One of their ministers here in B.C., Canada, the one stationed at White Rock, is clearly evangelical. So is one of their parishes in England which has its own parish church (I think that it's at Chelmsford or thereabouts). The TAC, therefore, is open to evangelicals.

    On the other side, the question is whether or not evangelicals are open to Rome. But I think that many of the issues which divided Catholics from Protestants have become less important today, and there is, instead, a new alliance between Catholics and evangelicals on issues which are more central in our time, such as the moral questions.

    Consider also that Rome has her charismatics, who correspond to the Anglican evangelicals rather closely. I would say that they are fools of a feather. I confess that I literally can't stand the sight of a charismatic, but I have to admit that they are there. So I'm not sure that evangelical Anglicans would feel out of place in the Roman Church of our time.


  35. Anonymous12:21 AM

    I think the equivalent of oikonomia is generally equitas.

  36. Anonymous12:23 AM

    Dear Mr. Perkins,

    In response to “Some questions for you”.

    (1) I do not know Bishop Burnham of Ebbsfleet, and thus have no idea of his desires or intentions other than what is publicly known. I do know that most Anglo Catholics in the Church of England are using the Novus Ordo aka “ordinary use” of the Roman rite. The TAC uses various versions of the Prayer Book, the English Missal and the Anglican Missal. Our liturgical use is not uniform. Even though the TAC and Forward in Faith are friendly, and Bishop John Broadhurst of Fulham is a good man, those who still belong to the Establishment tend to look down their noses at the TAC and other continuing churches – at least until now the chips are down.

    (2) As far as I know, there is no discussion in the TAC about the validity of its Orders. The question was not raised in any form during the meeting in Portsmouth last October. Peter Anson wrote some lovely colourful stories in “Bishops at Large” about Anglicans being fixed by some prelates in a boat off the coast of Italy in the 1870’s. I am sceptical about whether this ever happened. I have not been aware of any such activity going on in a continuing Anglican Church like the TAC, ACC, etc. We will have to wait and see what Rome will decide. If our Orders need to be “fixed” (conditional ordination), then it would be better for it to be done by Rome and not by episcopi vagantes.

    It would be very bad policy to imagine that we could “force” Rome by presenting some kind of “fait accompli”. People who do this kind of thing are told to go away or come in as laity!

    As regards clerical marriage and other such disciplinary questions, they just were not gone into during our bishops’ meeting, and if they have been discussed with Rome, I am not privy to such matters. If I were, I would certainly not be at liberty to discuss these things until the official announcement is made. There may be surprises…

    If we “wait for Rome”, we have time to die of old age… Why not? Perhaps we can continue the waffle and fudging forever, and while the dialogue continues with Rome we have credibility and stand out from “vagante” communities. On the other hand, Benedict XVI knows that time is a luxury he just doesn’t have, unless the question of his successor is fixed (and you know what the Romans say about conclaves….). Well, if it all goes the “other way” and back to the ways of the 60’s and 70’s, then it will be curtain down and “good night”. Then we’ll leave the secularists and the ragheads to fight over the spoils!

    This whole thing is going to depend on how useful Anglican ways can be in a global “reform of the reform” and towards a revival of Catholicism in Europe and the Americas. We are not asking Rome for charity or a “home for the shipwrecked”, but we would like our unique contribution to be of benefit to the whole Church.

    I face this whole situation with not a little confusion, but I just stand firm and leave it all in the Archbishop’s hands.

    I feel I should not say any more on this subject lest I should commit an indiscretion. Speculation is not healthy, any more than the sayings of those who say that we should “convert” or shove off.

    Fr. Anthony

  37. P.K.T.P,
    Just a quick note on your most recent post. I can not speak for any of the other religious confessions you mentioned but I can not imagine any circumstance under which an Orthodox bishop would agree to participate in the kind of episcopal consecration you are describing. He would be excommunicated and deposed by any Orthodox synod that presently exists, probably before the service was finished.


  38. Anonymous6:10 PM

    On John's last comment:

    Well, they can use Polish National Catholic Bishops, Old Catholic bihsops, Thuc-line bishops, and so forth. Quite a few are recognised as being sure, and there is some chap on line who keeps a register of those having certain orders. The TAC is currently in close contact with two bishops of the Holy Catholic Church, Western Rite. They are the real thing and even attended the October meeting of the TAC at Portsmouth. I'm sure that there are legitimate bishops out there who would do it all.

    I suppose that the problem may be that Rome will simply not recognise anything it does not oversee, except what she chooses to recognise.

    On reflection, I admit that you may be right on this. Perhaps their best course is to bring their communion into line with Western Catholic practice on other things (theology, law, discipline) and leave the ordination matter until Rome decides what to do. I think that they could help their case above all by formally declaring in favour of all twenty-one œcumenical councils, not just the first seven; and by requiring confession once a year and that only attendance at a Mass (not the Office) can fulfil the obligation. They might also throw out the prayerbooks and impose the Anglican Missal or English Missal. Rome must accept either because the more Protestant-leaning passages of the former have, in every single case, been incorporated into the A.U. Missal approved by Rome in 1983. They should also discontinue the use of Altar girls. I was shocked to see that they allow this abomination in Nova Scotia, although apparently not elsewhere in Canada.

    All right, I concede a point on the ordination issue.


  39. Anonymous6:29 PM

    On Fr. Anthony's comments:

    I have read on-line somewhere that Bishop Burnham has met with Archbishop Hepworth in the last several months. I haven't seen more than that--and on-line sources are not always correct either.

    I think it important not to let this opportunity pass us, and that we not die of old age before Rome acts. Delay is deadlier than denial. If we wait, I think that many of the more conservative Anglicans will give up and fall asleep or go home; others will become involved in more factionalism. Looking at the continuer movement on-line, I cannot help but notice the constant schisms and mergings, schisms and mergings, poachings (particularly with American-based groups moving into the alliances with continuer bishops in India), defections, property disputes, foundations of tiny churches, and so on. Bishop Joe Public over here forms a church consisting of himself, his mother-in-law, and the lady down the street, and they worship in a converted callbox somewhere.

    What is needed and what Rome can bring in particular, is STABILITY.

    The problem, as I see it, is that there are liberal forces in the Roman Church which are working hand-in-hand with the liberal forces in the Canterbury Communion, their common end being to fracture and marginalise traditionalism wherever they find it. They are moved, I think, by a conviction that the future lies in reform. They think that the changes now ravaging the Canterbury Communion are inevitable everywhere but that the time is not ripe for such changes at Rome. It is understood that Rome is more affected by an 'outmoded' worldview common in the Third World. So they must plan and wait and worm their way in to the Third World over time. In the mean time, they seek to keep conservative forces weak by division.

    So I do think that it's urgent that the TAC be reconciled as a uniate church; and I think that the prestige and authority of Rome would impart stability to the TAC and ensure its growth. Burnham might look down his nose at the TAC but he is running out of places to go. The next step would be for him to enter it. The entry of GAFCON might come later but I don't think that this is impossible just because they have many evangelicals there.

    I have been praying the rosary for a TAC uniate church and will continue doing so frequently. May God's will be done on this but, whatever the outcome, I hope that those on the Roman side will be warm and receptive to the TAC people.


  40. Anonymous7:17 PM

    Dear Fr. Anthony:

    If I could make a suggestion, would you please consider passing this request on to someone who controls your International website, the one for the International Anglican Fellowship (I.A.F.)? It would be really useful to enquirers if we could know who your bishops are in some Third World countries: I mean their names and the names of their dioceses. In particular, I am confused over India. One version of your "Messenger" mentions seven dioceses for India but only six Indian bishops attended the Portsmouth meeting. I think that the seventh might be Rockas Sandhu, Bishop of Amritsar. He may have been absent. But I'm not sure.

    One of the Indian bishops who did attend was Samuel Thangaraj Ponniah, but nowhere can I find out what he is bishop of. Is he bishop of Hoshangabad or of Bangalore? Who is Bishop of Bangalore?

    Aside from the indefatigable Archbishop Samuel P. Prakash, your metropolitian there and your Bishop of Lucknow, and man I very much admire, I have down Bishop Patrick Hosea (Nandyal & Andhra Pradesh?), James Lal of Delhi, S.J.E. Tuti (or Tutti) (Chotanagpur?), and K.M. Chacko (Travanacore & Cochin?).

    Do you have information naming these Indian bishops and their respective superscriptions?

    In Umze Wase Tiyopia, two of your three bishops were present at the Portsmouth meeting but the third, Zalislie Waddleton Gqwabaza of Queenstown was not there. Is he still with the TAC?

    From what I have read on-line, your Bishop for Pakistan, John Peter, D.D., may have been kidnapped by Muslim extemists. Is he safe now? Should we be praying for his return? He was not at your Portsmouth meeting. At one point, Archbishop Prakash said that he had gone missing, but that might be some months ago.

    I have no questions in regard to your bishops in Japan or Melanesia (Torres Strait). There seems to be real stability there.

    I was confused by the listing of your Canon Woodman as Vicar-General for New Zealand. Is N.Z. now a separate church in the TAC, or is it part of the Australian Church, or is it directly under your Primate?

    You now seem to have a Bishop Florenza Rocco in the U.S.A. who is described as a 'missionary bishop' in America. What on earth is his diocese? This is very confusing.

    Congratulations on your brand new churches for Mozambique, Kenya, and the Cameroon. But we need to know the names of their vicar-generals. Is Fr. Ndutiye v.-g. for the Cameroon, for instance? Are these three countries now discrete chuches in the TAC?

    Lastly, why not conssecrate a bishop for England and Wales? Surely it has enough priests by now. Even your tiny churches in Puerto Rico and Guatemala have their own bishops.

    Sorry for all the questions. It would really be fun if your I.A.F. would put up a webpage for each country and at least list the bishops and their respective dioceses. The impression one presently gets is that, in certain countries, it is impossible to say where the TAC is.

    Peter Karl T. Perkins

  41. Mr. Perkins,
    I am not certain if you were referring to TAC when you mention them accepting all twenty one of the councils recognized as OEcumenical by Rome, instead of just the first seven. However TAC already does recognize them. All of their bishops have signed a copy of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC)and submitted this with their petition for union with Rome.

    The TAC bishops have signed off on each and every dogma of the Roman Church without exception.


  42. Anonymous11:13 PM

    Dear John:

    I have heard that they have accepted the Catechism. But have they imposed this on their lay subjects? Their websites continue to abide by the St. Louis Affirmation of 1977, which mentions only the first seven councils.


  43. Anonymous12:53 PM

    Fr. Anthony and Mr. Perkins, your correspondence back and forth is some of the most interesting and informative stuff presently appearing in the blogosphere (despite Fr. Anthony's resolution to "not say anymore on this subject"). Thanks for sharing with the rest of us.

  44. Anonymous2:29 PM

    In response to the request for the February 2008 TAC directory. It is in pdf format to escape the spambots.

    Fr. Anthony

  45. Anonymous4:07 PM

    Perhaps the readers of this blog have seen this:

    It sheds some light on (almost exclusively) non TAC "continuing Anglican" opinion. Most of the comments seem to be of the "ACC" persuasion (known for its lavender mafia, a very litigious nature and its donatistic attitudes - the ACC think Rome must needs come to them for reconciliation).

    The author, Fr. Hart, a decent enough bloke has two brothers one an Orthodox priest and the other a Roman priest (Rockford, Ill diocese, says the old mass) though all 3 were first ordained in ECUSA. He now works for bishop Joel Marcus Johnson whose jurisdiction comprises one (maybe two) parishes in Maryland.

    Note the one TAC/ACA poster, "poetreader," he is VERY strange and does not speak for anybody in the TAC except himself. He seems to make an occupation of the blogosphere.

  46. Thank you all for this very helpful and interesting discussion! I am a convert to Roman Catholicism from non-denominational protestantism, as of 9 years ago, and one of the most difficult things has been the many abuses and the overall banality that has been my most frequent experience with the N.O. Mass. Ever since years ago when I first heard of the TAC and their desire for unity with Rome, I have been praying intensely for this intention and following every scrap of news I could find on it. I have no idea what the future may hold in terms of this (God grant wisdom to our Holy Father). But I did want to say something in response to DanishCatholic's comment:

    Peolpe are saying they would boost the latin church with "conservatism and good liturgy". But the Eastern Rite Catholic Churches are also Uniate have a sense of the sacred and good liturgy and i don't see them contribute with anything in the "fight" to regain tradition and the sacred in the latin rite church. Therefore i ask what would a "Anglo" cahtolic uniate rite church contribute with to the latin rite churh?

    With the exception of myself, my family (parents and siblings) are Eatern rite Catholics. I attended their parish for years, and have seen firsthand the contribution to be made by faithful and liturgically rich parishes of another rite, even to a very liberal Roman Catholic diocese (in California). In many ways, this parish has been a haven for faithful Catholics, allowing them to hold together and to raise another generation of children who have either been able to grow up with this beauty and reverence, or at least to experience it occasionally, and know that this is how things ought to be. For many visiting Roman Catholics, too, attending an Eastern liturgy has been an eye-opener for them, and has sent them to their own parishes seeking the restoration of reverence and tradition within their own rite. For many friends from my young adults' group at the local Roman parish, this was their first exposure to beautiful liturgy, and it made a great impact on them in realizing that there is so much more out there than what they had been getting. I have often been surprised to find out how many of the faithful Catholics I've met in other parts of California have either heard of or visited my parish, despite it being in a tiny town, many hours from the nearest big city. Though the influence of such parishes may seem small, this is the type of leaven that can have a mighty effect over time.

    I personally would love to see Anglican Rite Catholic parishes all over the country - I wish there was one near me now! To have such a reverent and beautiful liturgy, in my own language, and rich with the beauty of centuries of growth rather than a couple decades of innovation - it would be amazing! And I have long thought that there are many protestants (such as my former church which has spent the past 9 years becoming increasingly liturgical and sacramental) which would be much more likely to become Catholic if there were something like this available to them. God grant that it may be so!

    God bless you all.


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