"Come in, my brothers and sisters, you are all very welcome home!
Georg...put the kettle on!"
Another great event yesterday: a number of Anglican priests and about 600 Anglican laity formally left the Church of England and are now perparing to enter the Church at Easter, forming the first wave of converts who will form the new Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham in the United Kingdom. More are expected to join in the coming months and years. I believe there are many who are in the wings observing and may in due course make the decision to enter full communion.
This Lent is indeed a grace-filled one as we can accompany them in spirit in these days of prayer and renewal as we welcome them into full communion. Many of the Anglican priests among them are also preparing for ordination to the priesthood at Pentecost.
Fr Keith Newton, the Ordinary, and Frs Andrew Burnham and John Broadhurst, former Anglican bishops, have been working away preparing for the converts. Media reaction has been, as one would expect. The word "disaffected2 is being bandied about, and what is even more strange, the term "dissident", once beloved of a liberal secular media, has now suddenly become a negative term. Funny that. However, if you can ignore that then there is a good interview with one of the Anglican priests coming in, Fr Ed Tomlinson, on the BBC website which is well worth watching. If this the calibre of priest we are getting, we are truly blessed. He can certainly help our new generation of priests in promoting the reform - both authentic Vatican II and the current Benedictine one, which are actually the same reform at the end of the day.