Romeward Anglicans: are local bishops being bypassed?

The so-called Anglican Catholic Church in Canada (ACCC), which has about 45 parishes, has written to Rome to apply for an ordinariate. Its three active bishops propose setting up a governing council to suggest a terna from which the Pope can select the Canadian ordinariate's first ordinary or canonical head.

The wording and the method of proceeding proposed in the letter suggest that Rome has told them what to write. So that appears to be how it works: Rome appoints a governing council which then advises the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) whom to appoint as ordinary.


But hang on. Where does the national bishops' conference fit into this?

When the ordinariate scheme was announced in London and Rome last year, the understanding was clearly that Anglicans seeking an ordinariate would apply to the local bishops' conference, who would then (presumably) get the go-ahead from Rome. This is not just a procedural matter. Negotiations over what is permissible and what is not in the liturgies of the ordinariates are be carried out with the bishops' conference, not with Rome. Ecclesiologically, that makes sense: the ordinariates, after all, will be part of the local Church. 

In a previous post reporting how a traditionalist Church of England bishop had been trying to circumvent the local Catholic hierarchy, I quoted Mgr Andrew Faley, the priest responsible for the negotiations on behalf of the bishops' conference of England and Wales. "The authority of the Church in working this out rests with the bishops' conferences and not with the CDF", he clarified.

Hence Australia, where Peter Elliot, a Melbourne auxiliary, has been appointed by the Australian bishops' conference to negotiate with Anglican traditionalists there over the terms of the ordinariate which the Traditional Anglican Communion has applied for. 

But is this true of Canada? I've searched the Canadian bishops' conference website in vain for a statement on any application to the bishops by the ACCC. But there's nothing.

Perhaps I'm missing something.

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Bruce Hall
7 years 10 months ago
Remember, Jim McCrea and others, that Anglican Use has been around for a quarter of a century.  There is a long history of Anglican parishes within the Catholic church and they have not be subjected to authoritarian control games.
What has become clear in that time, however, is the hostility of many local bishops to Anglican Use parishes.  Many Anglicans who wanted to join the Catholic church under the Pastoral Provision, which created Anglican Use, were told no by the local bishops, for instance by Cardinal Mahoney.  It was clear to many Anglicans that many bishops were not open to them joining and maintaining parts of their Anglican heritage.  Indeed, many bishops were openly hostile.  That history of hostility is one reason why the bishops have been bypassed. It was the only way, given the hostility by many local bishops, that these Anglicans would be able to join and maintain their cultural identity.
Where Anglican Use parishes have been established, they have built up good relations with the local ordinary and clergy, including successors to the ordinary that welcomed them to the church. I have no doubt that once the Anglican Ordinariates have been established similar good relations will develop with the other ordinaries.
Jim McCrea
8 years ago
Wait until these naive little children jump the Tiber.  They will not know what hit them when "Mother" Church starts with her little authoritarian control games.
I predict a significant recidivism rate within 2-5 years of their foolishness coming to fruition.
Jeremy Hummerstone
8 years ago
Mgr Andrew Faley, the priest responsible for the negotiations on behalf of the bishops' conference of England and Wales. "The authority of the Church in working this out rests with the bishops' conferences and not with the CDF", he clarified.
This not clarification but obfuscation on the part of Mgr Faley. The bishops' conferences will be involved only when and as far as the CDF and the Ordinariates decide. Negotiations will not be up to them. The bishops (in England at least) don't like the Ordinariate, and this is a blatant attempt to get control, which will not be allowed to happen.
Ryan Sheen
8 years ago
I'm curious, Mr Iverleigh, why you say the "so-called Anglican Catholic Church [in] Canada." First of all, I believe it's "of" Canada-but more importantly, isn't that their name? Your "so-called" seems otherwise misleading, if not hostile.


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