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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!
(31 Oct 09 - RV) Vatican Press Office Director Fr. Federico Lombardi has issued the following clarification of the announced Apostolic Constitution regarding personal ordinariates for Anglican entering into full communion with the Catholic Church:This is a good time for ordinary readers to flood the mainstream media with this link from Vatican Radio: Vatican Clarification on Announced Apostolic Constitution
"There has been widespread speculation, based on supposedly knowledgeable remarks by an Italian correspondent Andrea Tornielli, that the delay in publication of the Apostolic Constitution regarding Personal Ordinariates for Anglicans entering into full communion with the Catholic Church, announced on October 20, 2009, by Cardinal William Levada, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, is due to more than “technical” reasons. According to this speculation, there is a serious substantial issue at the basis of the delay, namely, disagreement about whether celibacy will be the norm for the future clergy of the Provision. [Stop for a moment here and just ponder how speculation, which may not be true and is taken as fact, can cause harm to an effort by the Holy See. That is why it is important to nip this kind of thing while in the budding stage. We will probably see more of this.]
Cardinal Levada offered the following comments on this speculation: “Had I been asked I would happily have clarified any doubt about my remarks at the press conference. There is no substance to such speculation [ouch]. No one at the Vatican has mentioned any such issue to me. The delay is purely technical in the sense of ensuring consistency in canonical language and references. The translation issues are secondary; the decision not to delay publication in order to wait for the ‘official’ Latin text to be published in Acta Apostolicae Sedis was made some time ago [and the chosen date fell on the feast of St. Paul of the Cross - founder of the Passionists, who prayed for over 50 years for the conversion of England!!! Hence, the date certainly had purpose and if the heart of the Apostolic Constitution was done, why wait?]
The drafts prepared by the working group, and submitted for study and approval through the usual process followed by the Congregation, have all included the following statement, currently Article VI of the Constitution:
§1 Those who ministered as Anglican deacons, priests, or bishops, and who fulfill the requisites established by canon law and are not impeded by irregularities or other impediments may be accepted by the Ordinary as candidates for Holy Orders in the Catholic Church. In the case of married ministers, the norms established in the Encyclical Letter of Pope Paul VI Sacerdotalis coelibatus, n. 42 and in the Statement “In June” are to be observed. Unmarried ministers must submit to the norm of clerical celibacy of CIC can. 277, §1.
§2. The Ordinary, in full observance of the discipline of celibate clergy in the Latin Church, as a rule (pro regula) will admit only celibate men to the order of presbyter. He may also petition the Roman Pontiff, as a derogation from can. 277, §1, for the admission of married men to the order of presbyter on a case by case basis, according to objective criteria approved by the Holy See.
This article is to be understood as consistent with the current practice of the Church, in which married former Anglican ministers may be admitted to priestly ministry in the Catholic Church on a case by case basis. With regard to future seminarians, it was considered purely speculative whether there might be some cases in which a dispensation from the celibacy rule might be petitioned. For this reason, objective criteria about any such possibilities (e.g. married seminarians already in preparation) are to be developed jointly by the Personal Ordinariate and the Episcopal Conference, and submitted for approval of the Holy See.”
Cardinal Levada said he anticipates the technical work on the Constitution and Norms will be completed by the end of the first week of November".
Archbishop Vigneron blesses new shrine in Detroit salt mines
by Jared Field
Detroit- Clad in a black miner's jacket and sky blue hard hat, Archbishop Allen Vigneron descended 1,200 feet and 400 million years into the salt of the earth Oct. 22.Archbishop Vigneron went on to say:
The archbishop blessed the newly crafted statue and shrine to St. Barbara, the patroness of miners, at the base of the hoist - the only portal in or out - at the Detroit Salt Company on the city's southwest side, Michigan's lone rock salt mine.
"We must be disposed and appreciate what this means," Archbishop Vigneron told a group of about 30 miners. "When the Church blesses a statue for people to use, to pray at, we do this because when we look at this statue we see somebody who followed Christ. And we, like that saint, will seek to please Christ.
"Those saints are our friends. They pray for us; they remember us and help us with their love."
"I hope that every time you see this statue as you come to work, I hope it's a reminder to you that you can live in a way of holiness. A man, a woman, doesn't have to be in a convent or a monastery ... in order to be holy. God wants all of us to be holy, and you can live a life of holiness as you work in a mine. You can do God's will; you can glorify him by the integrity of your work, the hard work you offer, and the justice by which you treat one another."
Anti-CatholicismNow for the op-ed piece by +Dolan
October 29, 2009
The following article was submitted in a slightly shorter form to the New York Times as an op-ed article. The Times declined to publish it. I thought you might be interested in reading it.
By Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan
Archbishop of New York
October is the month we relish the highpoint of our national pastime, especially when one of our own New York teams is in the World Series!
Sadly, America has another national pastime, this one not pleasant at all: anti-catholicism.
It is not hyperbole to call prejudice against the Catholic Church a national pastime. Scholars such as Arthur Schlesinger Sr. referred to it as “the deepest bias in the history of the American people,” while John Higham described it as “the most luxuriant, tenacious tradition of paranoiac agitation in American history.” “The anti-semitism of the left,” is how Paul Viereck reads it, and Professor Philip Jenkins sub-titles his book on the topic “the last acceptable prejudice.”
If you want recent evidence of this unfairness against the Catholic Church, look no further than a few of these following examples of occurrences over the last couple weeks:
IV. Pastoral Priorities for the Diocese of Sioux CityGo read the rest of the Pastoral Letter: Ecclesia Semper Reformanda
1. We must renew our reverence, love, adoration and devotion to the Most Blessed Sacrament, within and outside of Mass. A renewal of Eucharistic Spirituality necessarily entails an ongoing implementation of the Second Vatican Council’s reform of the liturgy as authoritatively taught by the Church’s Magisterium, the promotion of Eucharistic Adoration outside of Mass, regular reception of the Sacrament of Reconciliation and devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of the Eucharist and our Mother.
Don’t miss Cardinal Francis George, Archbishop of Chicago and President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, at 8 p.m. ET, Friday, Oct. 30, on EWTN’s “The World Over Live” with Host Raymond Arroyo. He will discuss the “new atheism” and the necessity of the church creating a “new culture” to compete with growing secularism; repairing the Church’s perceived loss of credibility in the wake of Notre Dame scandal, the Kennedy funeral and the clergy sex abuse crisis; Christian/Muslim dialogue; Pope Benedict’s outreach to the Anglican community – and much more.Just a reminder, you can watch the World Over Live online via the EWTN website if you don't have cable.
WASHINGTON, D.C., October 26, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) - As House Speaker Nancy Pelosi aims to seal the abortion-expanding health care bill in an early November vote, pro-life lawmakers, led by Democratic Rep. Bart Stupak of Michigan, are locked in a dead heat race for votes with Democratic leadership. According to Stupak, the Democratic leadership intends to keep a stranglehold on any pro-life amendment effort, which they acknowledge would likely otherwise succeed.
In an interview with LifeSiteNews.com (LSN) today, Rep. Stupak said that he is counting on about 40 fellow Democrats to "take down the rule" - or kill the bill on a procedural vote - if House leadership refuses to allow a floor vote on an amendment that would prevent federal funding of abortion. The procedural "rule" vote would draft rules for debating the bill on the floor, and needs to be passed before the bill can move forward to a floor vote.
With the 40 Democrats, Stupak's vote-gathering efforts tally up to 220, counting the whole GOP - approximately two votes over the absolute minimum needed to succeed.
Stupak said he was "fairly confident" that the Democrat group would hold the line against the bill, "because this is not just an appropriation bill, this is the bill that will set the health care policy for the United States for years to come. This is a little bit more serious than just a rule vote on an appropriation bill."
Frankly, chances are slim that the Sinsinawa Dominicans will do anything about their Sr. Donna Quinn who publicly and formally cooperates in the death of babies by abortion. Chances are slim that anything will be done about her because, well, such are the times we live in: a Catholic religious can act for years as an abortion clinic escort and cause barely a ripple in her religious community, the local church, or in Rome. History won't believe it.
As I have discussed before ("Pope Benedict: A Pontiff With a Plan"), Pope Benedict XVI is very sensitive to the message that certain dates send. Summorum Pontificum, for instance, was signed on June 29, the Feast of Saints Peter and Paul, when the Orthodox Ecumenical Patriarch sends representatives to Rome each year to take part in the celebration of the Feast of Saints Peter and Paul (and sometimes comes himself). The Orthodox have long been concerned about the decline of the liturgy in the Western Church, and the revival of the Traditional Latin Mass was seen as a major step in the right direction.More opinion pieces on the Anglican matter:
So is there any significance in the date of today's announcement that Pope Benedict has signed an Apostolic Constitution which will allow entire Anglican communities to reenter the Catholic Church en masse? I think so.
October 20 is the feast day of Saint Paul of the Cross (1694-1775), the founder of the Passionists. Though Saint Paul spent his life in Italy, the Catholic Encyclopedia notes that "For fifty years he prayed for the conversion of England, and left the devotion as a legacy to his [spiritual] sons." Almost 65 years after his death, the Passionists were first introduced into England, and the Catholic Encyclopedia declares that "They came in the spirit of Apostles without gold or silver, without scrip or staff or shoes or two coats," yet they "soon revived without commotion several Catholic customs and practices which had died out since the Reformation. They were the first to adopt strict community life, to wear their habit in public, to give missions and retreats to the people, and to hold public religious processions."
"I can’t understand for the life of me how the Catholic Church could be against the biggest social justice issue of our time, where the very dignity of the human person is being respected by the fact that we’re caring and giving health care to the human person--that right now we have 50 million people who are uninsured,” Kennedy told Catholic News Service [probably not CNS, but CNSNews.com] in an article posted Thursday.
It's clear that Senator Kennedy does not consider the unborn to be persons. The murder of innocents is actually the social justice issue of our time. Murder of those ensouled by God at the moment of conception trumps that of someone who is sick and in need of health care funds. Reform is needed, but it must be aligned with the dignity of all persons - born and unborn. The Catholic Church is objecting to funds going directly, or indirectly, towards the killing of these individuals, in most cases, because they are mere inconveniences. The Church will not engage in consequentialism, whereby she allows evil for the sake of good. She is also trying to protect workers from being forced into engaging in something which they view as morally wrong.
Rep. Stupak is negotiating with Congressional leaders to resolve the dispute. He has threatened to block action on the larger health care reform bill unless he is allowed to offer a stand-alone amendment during floor debate to include the Hyde Amendment, the Associated Press reports
Traditional Anglican Communion Responds to Pope's Offer of Ecclesiastical refugeby John Hepworth
20th October 2009
I have spent this evening speaking to bishops, priests and lay people of the Traditional Anglican Communion in England, Africa, Australia, India, Canada, the United States and South America.
We are profoundly moved by the generosity of the Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI. He offers in this Apostolic Constitution the means for "former Anglicans to enter into the fullness of communion with the Catholic Church". He hopes that we can "find in this canonical structure the opportunity to preserve those Anglican traditions precious to us and consistent with the Catholic faith". He then warmly states "we are happy that these men and women bring with them their particular contributions to our common life of faith".
May I firstly state that this is an act of great goodness on the part of the Holy Father. He has dedicated his pontificate to the cause of unity. It more than matches the dreams we dared to include in our petition of two years ago. It more than matches our prayers. In those two years, we have become very conscious of the prayers of our friends in the Catholic Church. Perhaps their prayers dared to ask even more than ours.
The Vatican has announced that Pope Benedict is setting up special provision for Anglicans, including married clergy, who want to convert to Rome together, preserving aspects of Anglican liturgy. They will be given their own pastoral supervision, according to this press release from the Vatican:
“In this Apostolic Constitution the Holy Father has introduced a canonical structure that provides for such corporate reunion by establishing Personal Ordinariates which will allow former Anglicans to enter full communion with the Catholic Church while preserving elements of the distinctive Anglican spiritual and liturgical patrimony.”
More on this very important story later. But this is clearly a historic gesture by Pope Benedict which will encourage thousands of disaffected Anglicans to become Roman Catholics.
III. The Current Context
There was a great excitement immediately after the Council: excitement for innovation, change, freedom, renewed dynamism. There was a great desire to implement the Council immediately, with the best of intentions. In doing so, the Church after the Council achieved many things. The Council’s aggiornamento brought about a great breath of fresh air, a new freedom and excitement about being Catholic. However, this era of change and freedom took place during a most tumultuous time. The 1960s and 1970s brought about a wholesale change within our culture and society, so that it seemed that everything was “up for grabs.” The Church seemed to be going the same way as society, suggesting that nothing was certain or solid. If the Church could change some things, it could change anything and everything. Sometimes we set out to convert the world, but were instead converted by it. We have sometimes lost sight of who we are and what we believe, and therefore have little to offer the world that so desperately needs the Gospel. A pendulum effect began in the Church and has not yet stopped swinging. In the effort to correct exaggerations or one-sidedness in various areas, the reform often times swung to the exact opposite pole.
This pendulum swing can be seen in the areas of liturgy, popular piety, family life, catechesis, ecumenism, morals, and political involvement, to name just a few. It seems to me that in many areas of the Church’s life the “hermeneutic of discontinuity” has triumphed. It has manifested itself in a sort of dualism, an either/or mentality and insistence in various areas of the Church’s life: either fidelity to doctrine or social justice work, either Latin or English, either our personal conscience or the authority of the Church, either chant or contemporary music, either tradition or progress, either liturgy or popular piety, either conservative or liberal, either Mass or Adoration, either the Magisterium or theologians, either ecumenism or evangelization, either rubrics or personalization, either the Baltimore Catechism or “experience”; and the list goes on and on! We have always been a “both/and” people: intrinsically traditional and conservative in what pertains to the faith, and creative in pastoral ministry and engaging the world.
My brothers and sisters, let me say this clearly: The “hermeneutic of discontinuity” is a false interpretation and implementation of the Council and the Catholic Faith. It emphasizes the “engagement with the world” to the exclusion of the deposit of faith. This has wreaked havoc on the Church, systematically dismantling the Catholic Faith to please the world, watering down what is distinctively Catholic, and ironically becoming completely irrelevant and impotent for the mission of the Church in the world. The Church that seeks simply what works or is “useful” in the end becomes useless.
Our urgent need at this time is to reclaim and strengthen our understanding of the deposit of faith. We must have a distinctive identity and culture as Catholics, if we would effectively communicate the Gospel to the people of this day and Diocese. This is our mission. Notice that this mission is two-fold, like the Second Vatican Council’s purpose. It is toward ourselves within the Church (ad intra), and it is to the world (ad extra). The first is primary and necessary for the second; the second flows from the first. This is why we have not been as successful as we should be in bringing the world to Jesus Christ and Jesus Christ to the world. We cannot give what we do not have; we cannot fulfill our mission to evangelize, if we ourselves are not evangelized.9
With all this in mind, how do we, the Diocese of Sioux City, Iowa, reclaim and strengthen our faith, identity and culture as Catholics so as to engage more effectively in our mission?
As is well known, Blessed Pope John XXIII convened the Second Vatican Council to be the moment of renewal for the Church in the modern world. The world had changed a great deal since the Protestant Reformation, the Catholic Counter-Reformation, the so-called Enlightenment, and the secular revolutions of the nineteenth and
twentieth centuries. The Church now found herself beset on all sides by a world that could no longer understand her, and from within by an unfortunate tendency to isolation, fearing engagement with the rapidly changing world.
In opening the Council, Blessed John stated that the “greatest concern of the Ecumenical Council” was twofold: “that the sacred deposit of Christian doctrine should be [both] guarded and taught more efficaciously.”4 Later in the speech, he elaborated on this: “The substance of the ancient doctrine of the deposit of faith is one thing, and the way in which it is presented is another.”5 The teachings of the Church, our identity and culture as Catholics, must be loved and guarded, yet brought forth and taught in a way understandable to the modern world.
Pope Paul VI and Pope John Paul the Great constantly preached the same thing in calling for a “New Evangelization” of the faithful, our separated brothers and sisters in Christ, and all those who do not know Jesus Christ or the Church. This New Evangelization was to be “new not in content but in ardor, methods, and expression.”6 It is readily apparent from his teaching and ministry that for Pope John Paul the Great, the New Evangelization was the true fruit of the Second Vatican Council. Indeed, the Council was the beginning and blueprint for evangelization in the modern world. He explicitly stated this as his particular mission at the time of his election, and he lived it to the end.7 He spent his entire pontificate interpreting and implementing the Council’s documents according to the light of the Holy Spirit, given in virtue of his office, amid the changing circumstances of the Church and the world.
We now find ourselves forty-four years since the close of the Council. Many questions still need to be asked and answered. Have we understood the Council within the context of the entire history of the Church? Have we understood the documents well? Have we truly appropriated and implemented them? Is the current state of the Church what the Council intended? What went right? What went wrong? Where is the promised “New Pentecost”?
Pope Benedict XVI reflected on these important questions in an address to the Roman Curia in December, 2005:
Notice, first, Pope Benedict’s honest acknowledgement that the implementation of the Council has been difficult and is not complete. Notice also his clear-sighted grasp of how two rival interpretations have led to different “camps” within the Church. This division has weakened our identity and mission.The question arises: Why has the implementation of the Council, in large parts of the Church, thus far been so difficult? Well, it all depends on the correct interpretation of the Council or—as we would say today—on its proper hermeneutics, the correct key to its interpretation and application. The problems in its implementation arose from the fact that two contrary hermeneutics came face to face and quarreled with each other. One caused confusion, the other, silently but more and more visibly, bore and is bearing fruit.
On the one hand, there is an interpretation that I would call “a hermeneutic of discontinuity and rupture,” it has frequently availed itself of the sympathies of the mass media, and also one trend of modern theology. On the other, there is the “hermeneutic of reform,” of renewal in the continuity of the one subject – Church – which the Lord has given to us. She is a subject which increases in time and develops, yet always remaining the same, the one subject of the journeying People of God.
The hermeneutic of discontinuity risks ending in a split between the pre-conciliar Church and the post-conciliar Church. It asserts that the texts of the Council as such do not yet express the true spirit of the Council.8
It is crucial that we all grasp that the hermeneutic or interpretation of discontinuity or rupture, which many think is the settled and even official position, is not the true meaning of the Council. This interpretation sees the pre-conciliar and post-conciliar Church almost as two different churches. It sees the Second Vatican Council as a radical break with the past. There can be no split, however, between the Church and her faith before and after the Council. We must stop speaking of the “Pre-Vatican II” and “Post-Vatican II” Church, and stop seeing various characteristics of the Church as “pre” and “post” Vatican II. Instead, we must evaluate them according to their intrinsic value and pastoral effectiveness in this day and age.
Therefore, we must heed the Holy Father’s point that one interpretation, the “hermeneutic of reform,” is valid, and has borne and is bearing fruit. This hermeneutic of reform, as described above, takes seriously and keeps together the two poles of identity (the ancient deposit of faith and life) and engagement with the world (teaching it more efficaciously).
Lastly, the Holy Father, going into greater detail later in the address, explains that the “spirit of Vatican II” must be found only in the letter of the documents themselves. The so-called “spirit” of the Council has no authoritative interpretation. It is a ghost or demon that must be exorcised if we are to proceed with the Lord’s work.
4 Pope John XXIII, Oct 11, 1962We'll continue tomorrow with the next segment.
6 Address to the Assembly of CELAM (March 9, 1983), III: AAS 75 (1983), 778. See also Ecclesia in America, 6.
7 E.g., Inaugural Address of Pope John Paul II, October 22, 1978 : “Do not be afraid. Open wide the doors for Christ. To his saving power open the boundaries of States, economic and political systems, the vast fields of culture, civilization and development. Do not be afraid. Christ knows ‘what is in man.’ He alone knows it.”
8 Pope Benedict XVI, Christmas address to the Roman Curia, December 22, 2005.