Skip to comments.2006 Anglican Use Conference Report
Posted on 06/08/2006 6:52:29 PM PDT by sionnsar
I returned yesterday from the 2006 Anglican Use Conference. It was a wonderful event and I congratulate Eric Bergmann on his recently admitted dossier to the Holy See.
Will There Be an Anglican Rite?
All the buzz surrounds the very explicit statement by Father William Stetson with reference to a rumored Anglican sui juris "uniat" Church. Fr Stetson related that it is nearly impossible to arrange Anglicans in an ecclesiastical structure akin to the Eastern Catholic sui juris Churches.
It essentially centers on a question of Catholic ecclesiology. The ancient metropolitan see of Canterbury and that of York were metropolitan sees established by Rome and governed by Rome. From the Roman point of view, these two sees fell into schism. It is therefore impossible to create a sui juris ecclesiastical body that exists at a greater canonical status than it possesed prior to schism. To put it briefly, Canterbury and York belonged to the Roman patriarchate and their descendents will continue to belong to that patriarchate as they return to full communion with Rome.
Perhaps the following illustration may help. Suppose that the archdiocese of New York went into the schism and then a small number of New York Catholics wanted to return to Rome. They could not expect for Rome to elevate their newly formed ecclesiastical body as canonically sui juris and patriarchal. There could not be a "New York Church" in Communion with Rome, because New York never held sui juris status to begin with.
A further complication involves that fact that Canterbury and York have been replaced by a new Roman hierarchy in England. You can't raise the former schismatics to an ecclesiastically level (i.e., uniat status) that is canonically higher than the Archdiocese of Westminster.
It is really a matter of Roman ecclesiology. Unfortunately, many Anglians have been speaking so freely with the term "uniat" and "Anglican Rite" that everyone assumes it is a reality. Notice, however, that there has never been any indication of the sort from Rome.
Thus, as it stands, returning Anglicans are allowed to continue to enjoy the Anglican Use of the Roman Rite, which is a sort of analogue to the Sarum Use of the Roman Rite.
Father Carleton Jones, O.P. spoke about his conversion from the Anglican Cowley Fathers to the Catholic Church and the Dominican Order of Preachers. He gave a very interesting and entertaining description of the pyschology of Anglo-Catholic's journey to the Roman Catholic Church.
Anglican Use Architecture
Matthew of Alderman (of the Shrine of the Holy Whapping blog) gave a stunning presentation on what an Anglican Use parish in Chicago might look like. It was a blend of gothic and baroque and envisioned, as I understand it, what an English baroque might be become if England had been further connected to continental developments.
Anglican Use Evensong was delightful and I most enjoyed the Anglican chant employed for the Psalm and the hearty and LOUD singing.
Cardinal Dulles on Conversion
Before Cardinal Dulles spoke there was a very nice hour of appetizers and wine in the Trophey room at Scranton University. A very nice dinner followed. During dessert, a representative from Our Lady of Walsingham in House gave a power point presentation outline their newly built and appointed church. I commend to their website and the pictures that can be found there.
Cardinal Dulles gave a wonderful history of his own conversion to the Catholic Church and his pilgrimage from nominal Presbyterianism. The best received portions of his address were his reflections on his encounters with Anglicans and his reasons for why he never seriously considered Anglicanism.
David Mills, the editor of Touchstone Magazine, gave a talk on the his conversion and the obstacles that Anglicans encounter as they approach the Catholic Church. He discussed Anglican hubris in a way that made even the most committed Anglican laugh. He discussed the Catholic liturgy in relation to Anglican liturgy and the way in which one cannot fully understand the Catholic Church from the outside.
Anglican Use Mass Celebrated by Bishop Dougherty
My favorite part was the Anglican Use Mass. Haveing been Catholic for only two weeks, it was so comforting to pray the Prayer of Humble Access again. Those little things still mean so much to me. I wept after receiving Communion. I know that I am at home in Rome but I still have a great love for Anglicanism that I hope never goes away. It was also very sad to see many of my brother Episcopal priests come to the rail with arms crossed and know that I am no longer in communion with them at the altar. But mostly I experienced great joy to know that I am a Catholic and that Rome has been so generous so as to provide we ex-Anglicans with this beautiful tradition and liturgy.
It was a wonderful conference and I hope that even those slightly interested in the Anglican Use will attend next year's conference. Perhaps the best part of the conference were all the interesting discussions that occurred during lunch, dinner, and late into the evening in the hotel bar between sips from pints and puffs of pipe smoke. For all those there, it was wonderful to meet you. I look forward to next year. And I hope that there will be many more there next time around.
David Virtue's observations.
Item of interest - ping!
Was there any discussion of establishing a personal prelature similar to that enjoyed by Opus Dei?
Here's some beautiful examples of churches where the Anglican Use Rite is already in place.
I find those churches much nicer than the McChurches the US Catholic Church has been building of late.
I would LOVE to go to one of those churches, wouldn't you?
As a die-hard Latin-Mass going traditional Catholic who recently bought the Anglican Use DVD and BDW, I LOVE the prayer of Humble Access. Beautiful, Beautiful prayer.
We do not presume to come to this thy Table, O merciful Lord, trusting in our own righteousness, but in thy manifold and great mercies. We are not worthy so much as to gather up the crumbs under thy Table. But thou art the same Lord whose property is always to have mercy. Grant us therefore, gracious Lord, so to eat the Flesh of thy dear Son Jesus Christ, and to drink his Blood, that we may evermore dwell in him, and he in us.
In the use of Anglicans, there is more:
...to drink His blood, 'that our sinful bodies may be made clean by His body and our souls washed through His most precious blood'.
This preserves the reason we communicate.
Now those are what I call churches! Beautiful! Those Anglican Use Catholics have wonderful taste!
GAG! One of those "airplane hangers" good Mother Angelica talks about! About as condusive to worship and meditation as an airport terminal.
I wish we could get an Anglican Use parish in Jackson, MS (where I live). There are scads of disillusioned (and ahem....wealthy) former Episcopalians running about. I would imagine the same situation obtains in almost every Southern city of note.
Oddly, I think one of the things that keeps more Episcopalians from swimming the Tiber is contemporary Catholic aesthetics which, most traditionalists would agree, are pretty debased.
The one thing that the traditionally-minded Episcopalians I know held onto as the ECUSA descended into deeply heterodox doctrinal disarray was an appreciation for the beauties of ancient liturgy and sacred music.
Unfortunately when these folks visit a Catholic church, they are generally appreciative of the steadfastness of Catholic doctrine, but they are usually turned off by the goofy post-Vatican II/ Novus Ordo liturgical innovations.
It's sad to say, but many of these good people feel hopeless and adrift. I wish we could bring them home.
Yikes. As much as I hate to say this, that a good bit like my church. (sigh).
Almighty God, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Maker of all things, Judge of all men, we acknowledge and bewail our manifold sins and wickedness, which we from time to time most greivously have committed, by thought, word, and deed, against thy Divine Majesty, Provoking most justly thy wrath and indignation against us...
And then after the General Confession and the Absolution was done, the Priest would say something that I still remember, I loved to hear him say:
Hear what comfortable words our Saviour Christ saith unto all who truly turn unto him:
Come unto me all ye who travail and are heavy laden, and I will refresh thee.
Not so bad for being way out here in the Provinces, are they? They make me proud of Texas.
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