mai 282011

Nettstedet The Ordinariate Portal publiserer nå flere dokumenter fra 1993/94, da den første store bølgen av anglikanske prester ble katolikker. De engelske biskopene tok nokså vennlig mot enkeltpersoner den gangen, prester og lekfolk, men ville ikke legge til rette for at grupper av troende kunne konvertere sammen. Dessuten insisterte de på at konvertittene skulle assimileres fullstendig i vanlig katolsk menighetsliv – ikke kunne ta med seg noe av sin arv, ikke ha noen grupper for seg selv. Etter pave Benedikts initiativ overfor anglikanerne for et par år siden, er dette blitt radikalt forandret.

Nedenfor tar jeg med et utdrag fra ett av disse dokumentene – de engelske biskopene sier følgende i november 1993:

Approaches have been made by clergy of the Church of England, both singly and in groups. In some few instances groups of parishioners with their pastors have also made approaches, enquiring about the possibility of coming into full communion with the Holy See, embracing the fullness of Catholic life. After our Low Week meeting we stated that our aim in welcoming those who wish to join the Catholic Church must be their eventual total integration into the Catholic life of our dioceses. This remains our aim. Other paths have been suggested. We have looked carefully at the suggestions of the establishment of a Personal Prelature or of a Special Pastoral Provision, such as exists in the USA. We are of one mind that, in our particular circumstances, such alternatives would serve to increase the multiplicity of Church identities in an unhelpful and confusing manner. Our determination in this matter does not imply any lack of respect or esteem for the tradition, strengths and vision of Christian living represented by those who are approaching us. In fact the opposite is the case. We are convinced that the Roman Catholic community, diocese by diocese, will be enriched by the eventual full integration of those who bring with them not only the traditions of English Anglicanism, but also its commitment to reach out to those who are on the margin of Christian living, or beyond. But for this to be the case, it is essential that we strive to come together in a fully integrated manner, a challenge which will involved real change for all concerned.

It is this fundamental conviction that gives shape to the ways in which we have agreed to respond to those who approach us. …

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