Thursday, July 31, 2008

CANTERBURY & ROME? Cardinal Kasper's words . . .

IT'S WHAT WE HAVE SAID SINCE 1992 - and the so-called "liberal catholics" (sadly, both Anglican and Roman!) consistently told us we were wrong.

Well, yesterday at the Lambeth Conference, Cardinal Walter Kasper, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, said that the Catholic Church believes its position on both sexuality and the ordination of women is “deeply rooted in Scripture.”

According to ZENIT, he went on:

“A clear declaration from the Anglican Communion [on sexuality] would offer us greater possibilities to provide a common testimony on human sexuality and matrimony, a testimony painfully necessary for the world of today.”

He also said that the ordination of women to the priesthood and the episcopate “substantially and definitively blocks a possible recognition of Anglican orders by the Catholic Church.”

The cardinal recalled Church teaching that the practice of ordaining only men comes directly from Christ, and the Church is not in a position to change it.

As a result of women’s ordination, “full, visible communion, as the objective of our dialogue, has taken a step backward, [so] that our dialogue will have less defined objectives and, therefore, its nature will be changed.

“Though this dialogue can still produce good results, it will not be supported by the dynamism that comes from the realistic possibility of the union that Christ demands of us or of the common participation at the table of the one Lord, which we desire so ardently.”

Never mind all those Anglicans and all those Roman Catholics who have prayed, worked, and dialogued towards reunion, or those of us who were ordained into a church that had already solemnly and publicly committed itself to the vision of the Malines Conversations and reiterated by Pope Paul VI, that is, that as Anglicans we would be "united but not absorbed."

Never mind that even Archbishop Robert Runcie, who on a number of occasions described Anglicanism as a "provisional way of being Christian", signed a declaration with Pope John Paul II as recently as 1989:

" . . . Against the background of human disunity the arduous journey to Christian unity must be pursued with determination and vigour whatever obstacles are perceived to block the path. We here commit ourselves and those we represent to the restoration of full ecclesial communion in the confidence that to seek anything less would be to betray our Lord's intention for the unity of his people."

The extreme liberals in the Anglican Communion have destroyed the dream. Not OUR dream. Along with our leaders back then, we believed - and still believe - it to be the dream of Jesus himself.

The damage has been done.

We must still believe and pray toward unity, because that is what God wants. Sadly, it will not happen until well into the future, contrary to the expectation of those - on both sides - who inaugurated the ARCIC talks.

Anyway, for old times' sake, here are some of the memories:

Pope John Paul II and Archbishop Robert Runcie entering Canterbury Cathedral together.

Praying together at the nave altar.

Having signed the declaration . . .

". . . We are agreed that it is now time to set up a new international Commission. Its task will be to continue the work already begun: to examine, especially in the light of our respective judgments on the Final Report, the outstanding doctrinal differences which still separate us, with a view towards their eventual resolution; to study all that hinders the mutual recognition of the ministries of our Communions; and to recommend what practical steps will be necessary when, on the basis of our unity in faith, we are able to proceed to the restoration of full communion . . ."

The entire document is HERE.


Alice C. Linsley said...

Wonderful photos! It makes the heart glad when brothers dwelt together in unity of the Gospel.

Thanks for the reminder of how important it is to have right-believing leadership in Canterbury. May God grant that to Anglicans again very soon.

I enjoy your blog. You faithful catholic witness encourages me and I will visit regularly.

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