Here is a link to the beautiful Solemn Evensong for the Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul
This coming Saturday is the 40th anniversary of Pope Saint John Paul II’s authorization of the Pastoral Provision for Anglicans, which for the first time ever created an Anglican form of Catholic liturgy as well as parochial jurisdiction for Anglican Use Catholics.
Numerous ordinariate priests will be marking the occasion this Saturday by offering their daily masses with the intention of thanksgiving for what St John Paul II did for Catholics of the Anglican tradition 40 years ago to the day.
Just a few months ago, ordinariate members spread across multiple countries celebrated the tenth anniversary of Pope Benedict’s legislation establishing diocesan jurisdictions for us characterized by our Anglican patrimonial liturgical forms.
But this coming week, on June 20th, Anglican Catholics will celebrate an even older anniversary of a key papal act that explicitly paved the way for the Anglican ordinariates.
For generations leading up to the pontificate of John Paul II, Anglicans had engaged in prayer, hope, and discussion focussed on the eventual healing of our schism and our return to full communion with Rome and the rest of the Catholic Church. The formal manifestation of this took expression in the ARCIC dialogue with the Holy See which began in 1967.
In the mid-late 1970s, Anglican approaches to Rome by groups such as the Diocese of the Holy Trinity and the Pro-Diocese of St Augustine of Canterbury (PDSAC) culminated in the Holy See crafting a pastoral response that would provide a way for Anglicans to become fully Catholic while retaining their corporate integrity, their common identity, and their liturgical tradition’s distinctiveness.
An extensive and detailed account of much of this backstory can be found in Father Jack Barker’s Early History of the Anglican Use. Fr Barker, a priest of the ordinariate, was also a speaker at our recent Anglican Tradition Conference in Toronto this past November. His talk, entitled Behind the Petition: A Brief Account of How Anglicans Received Ordinariate Status, is another exceptional source for the history of this development.
What resulted was a concrete demonstration of how seriously the Holy See took these Anglican approaches, and its respect for the Anglican tradition.
On June 18th, 1980, the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith finalized a decree for papal approval that responded to the Anglican approaches and their desire to retain their distinctive identity in becoming Catholic. The decree comprised various decisions that would form the framework for a ‘Pastoral Provision’ that, pending certain practical workings out by the NCCB (now the USCCB), would enable Anglicans in the United States entering full communion to form Catholic parishes belonging to them and characterized by their Anglican liturgical distinctiveness. It would also enable married Anglican priests to continue leading those congregations as Catholic priests, the precedent for which had been set back in the early 1950s under Pope Pius XII.
Two days later these decisions were presented to the Holy Father, and on June 20th, 1980, Pope John Paul II gave his formal authorization to the provisions and signed the decree into law. This groundbreaking event, however, did not make headlines in the way Anglicanorum Coetibus did a generation later. In fact, the interested Anglicans weren’t even to learn of the pope’s act for months! Over a month after St John Paul II’s historic act, on July 22nd, Cardinal Seper, the Prefect of the SCDF, sent a letter enclosing the substantive provisions of the decree to Archbishop John Quinn of San Francisco, who was at the time the President of the NCCB.
It wasn’t until August 20 that Archbishop Quinn made the public announcement in a press release. As Fr Jack Barker, one of the pioneers of the Anglican Use, writes, “At a private meeting, hosted by Archbishop John Quinn of San Francisco at his residence in San Francisco on August 19, 1980, the leadership of the PDSAC was informed that he intended to make a public announcement the following day. This announcement would state that Rome would make pastoral provision for former Anglicans thereby ensuring their identity and the preservation of elements of their worship and would consider for Roman Catholic priesthood even those Anglican priests who were married. The Archbishop read portions of the cover letter addressed to him together with the text of the Decree sent to him by the Holy See. The leadership and people celebrated a Mass of thanksgiving in Los Angeles the next evening.”
Discussions took place in multiple meetings and conferences through 1981 about proposed provisional liturgies and what precise form the Anglican liturgical use was to take. In due course authorization was given and an Anglican Use Catholic mass became a reality, based on the American Book of Common Prayer and incorporating material from the Sarum and Roman liturgies. The first parish dedicated to the Anglican Use was Our Lady of the Atonement in San Antonio, established in 1983, and more followed, including Our Lady of Walsingham in Houston, now the Cathedral of the North American ordinariate. While the Anglican Use took shape in the 1980s, its actual publication in the Book of Divine Worship didn’t occur until 2003, and as is now well known, it has developed even further and exists in a more fulsome form in Divine Worship: The Missal.
But all of this began with Pope John Paul II’s authorization of the creation of a Pastoral Provision in the first place on June 20th, 1980. His historic decision even noted that, while the Anglican Use parishes were to be placed in the local Roman dioceses, “the possibility of some other type of structure as provided for by canonical dispositions, and as suited to the needs of the group, is not excluded.” Prayers for just such another type of structure were to be answered in the ordinariate. So in many respects St John Paul II’s act was prophetic. Many things can be said about what it accomplished for the first time in history, but it is indisputable how very far-sighted it was, laying the groundwork for what is even now only beginning to be glimpsed.
Much more research ought to be done in time into the origins of both Anglican provisions of 1980 and 2009, but here are some items of interest touching on that of 1980:
- A cursory look at the differences and similarities between the 1980 and 2009 provisions (This article is somewhat outdated and contains some inaccuracies, but it is an interesting glimpse at how the ordinariate was seen early on)
- The manual produced in later years for those interested in the Pastoral Provision
- The Prayer for the Anglican Use
Ordinariate priests in different countries will be celebrating mass this Saturday with the intention of thanksgiving, but all ordinariate faithful have cause to give thanks for what St John Paul II did for us 40 years ago. It is easy for us to thank God for Pope Benedict XVI and his Anglicanorum Coetibus, but on this occasion let us recall to mind the necessity to always give thanks for what St John Paul II gave to us a generation earlier. For it was indeed the framework on which Cardinal Ratzinger would later build.
Thanks be to God and may his holy name be praised!
Fr Derek Cross of the Toronto Oratory of St Philip Neri gave the final talk at ATC 2019, our ninth conference on the Anglican tradition in the Catholic Church, and his talk – St John Henry Newman on the Liturgical Act: A Patrimonial Reflection – can now be viewed online on both YouTube and Facebook.
A former Anglican like Cardinal Newman, Fr Cross explored his fellow Oratorian’s treatment of the liturgical act in worship, reverence & ritual, and its bearing on the ordinariate’s Anglican patrimony, now an officially commended aqua vitae in the Catholic Church. Touching on “the Anglican communion’s reputation as a liturgical church & the desire for liturgical continuity expressed by Anglicanorum Coetibus,” Fr Cross references prophetic hopes for “An Anglican church, united with Rome but not absorbed – an Anglican uniate church,” & speaks of the work ahead of us to ever more fully appropriate the Anglican intellectual and liturgical patrimony.
To illustrate his reflections, Fr Cross takes note of various writings by Cardinal Newman, many of which are found in the recent book published by Dr Peter Kwasniewski: Newman on Worship, Reverence, and Ritual. This extensive collection forms the basis of the reflections comprising the talk, and Dr Kwasniewski has done the Anglican Catholic community a favour in placing all of this wealth in one place for our ease of reference. As Fr Cross puts it, “What better accompaniment to this weekend’s celebration can one imagine? This book is a primary witness to the liturgical theology of that great Oratorian priest who was in sundry ways the father of Anglicans who have enacted a recourso back from their alma mater to the grandmother Church…”
Prefacing his reflections on Newman, Fr Cross first cites two important and relevant quotations. He first turns to Fr Henry St John, the nephew of Newman’s close friend Fr Ambrose St John: “Few Catholic priests can have had such concentrated Anglican antecedents and background as mine were. I can truly say that all the best things in Anglicanism are still in me at every human level, intuitive, affective and intellectual, integrated now into my Catholicism. These have been incorporated into my Catholic life and, I am very sure, perfected by it. But the roots of this composite are thoroughly Anglican and I am deeply grateful for the ethos of the Church of England and its doctrine which had penetrated and built up the family, parents and brothers and sisters, in which I was bred… Our vision of the future must be that one day there will still be the Catholic Church, the same in its essential structure and truth. Towards unity with her, the churches now outside the Catholic Church will move. The Church will open wide its arms and accept all that is good and true in customs and in usage; in ways of thinking, worshipping, and government, that these churches have practiced and valued in their separated life. By this, the Church of Christ will be greatly enlarged and enriched. All that the Catholic Church now stands for will still be the substance of the Church’s structure. In less essential things, there will be a far wider variety of custom and usage, as there was in the early days of the Church’s history. As I look back over more than fifty years during which history has been in the making that must be the vision of our ecumenical hope and prayer.”
Next cited is Fr Aidan Nichols in The Panther and the Hind: “An Anglican church united with Rome but not absorbed – an Anglican uniate church – is perfectly feasible but it can only be constructed on the basis of a selection from among the elements I have mentioned. It might be a church with a religious metaphysic drawn from the Cambridge platonists, supplying as this would a doctrine of creation, and an account of the human being in the image and likeness of God, necessary to the theocentric humanism of any truly Catholic tradition; a doctrinal and sacramental ethos, taken from the restoration divines, with their stress on the inseparable inconnection of incarnation, church, and liturgy; and a missionary spirit borrowed from the evangelical movement and centred therefore on the universal significance of the Saviour’s atoning work; the whole to be confirmed and where necessary corrected by acceptance of the framework of the Roman Catholic communion, including the latter’s teaching authority to determine those many questions of faith and morals which historically have kept Anglicans divide. In such a way, numerous elements of the Anglican theological tradition, classics both as texts and persons, could find repatriation in the Western patriarchate, in peace and communion with that See with which the origins of English Christianity are forever connected.”
Thus Fr Cross lays the foundation for his exploration of Newman’s thought on worship, reverence and ritual as it touches on the liturgical act and the patrimony of the Anglican ordinariates. Fr Cross’s talk will be published in full in an upcoming issue of the Society’s journal, but for now it can be watched in full here:
Fr. Doug Hayman, Dean of the Canadian Deanery of St. John the Baptist of the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter, has been doing a series of special talks for children.
We are also blessed to have him as our pastor in Ottawa at Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
He has one up now for Trinity Sunday in which he describes the Trinity!
You can find his previous talks at his YouTube channel. Subscribe and enjoy!
To-day, June 2, 2020, is the 67th anniversary of the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II at Westminster Abbey with the Crown Jewelsin the Coronation Chair as Sovereign of the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Pakistan, and Ceylon. What a very different world it was then! The British Empire still spanned the globe, with Churchill as Prime Minister; Eisenhower had just become president of the United States. Anglo-Catholicism was at its apparent peak in many ways. At any rate, in honour of the day, I present a collection of prayers: some by (or to!) various of Her Majesty’s predecessors, others praying for the conversion of various of her realms, and ending with prayers for herself.