Thursday, January 29, 2009


Or More of the same.

from Catholic Online (

UPDATED: Traditional Anglican Communion set to Enter Catholic Church?

By Deacon Keith Fournier

CHESAPEAKE, Va. (Catholic Online) – UPDATED: Catholic Online promised to update our readers on this extraordinary story. So, we now pass this on: The National Catholic Register cites a "Vatican Source" as saying that "nothing's been decided" by the Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. Reports abound that the Congregation has recommended the creation of a personal prelature as the vehicle through which to receive the members of the Traditional Anglican Communion into full communion with the Roman Catholic Church. The Register contends that an official at the Congregation spoke with their correspondent Edward Pentin today saying,“It’s something that has appeared on the blogosphere and then been reiterated, but the truth is nothing’s been decided.” We set forth our original story below believing that the sources reporting this exciting news and the history of the dialogue support its accuracy.

The rest can be read by clicking the link above.


Anonymous said...

I had the original article from The Record sent to me by a trusted source. Because it was a trusted source, I read it, thought about it and passed it on.

I wonder if I've learnt my lesson yet?

If I have, from now on I won't be drawn to comment on, or even consider, any 'news' of the TAC's Roman venture until I read the joint communique.

Fr. Robert Hart said...

until I read the joint communique.

I was reluctant to post the news, but felt the pressure of keeping up.

A joint communique would be trustworthy. These other reports always seem to come from a hasty source, and from my experience I do not believe for one minute that the haste is that of Archbishop Hepworth. He seemed more concerned about preventing derailment of the whole train, and would not risk it.

Anonymous said...

You have to respect +Hepworth's uncanny ability to have this story crop up again and again every few months. Of course we really do not know what is going on behind the scenes, but one gets the idea that the reconciliation hope is kept alive by sheer force of will.

Fr. Robert Hart said...

Brian Gold:

It may be uncanny ability, or it may be someone else who leaks all over the place because he just can't help himself. Indeed, knowing some of the players, I think it's the latter.

poetreader said...

A message I received from Bishop Marsh, our new diocesan, including one he received from Bishop Langberg. Im posting it without comment.

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ:

There has been a good deal of interest in the latest press reports from Roman Catholic publications, which seem very optimistic regarding our hoped-for intercommunion with Rome. Bishop Langberg, who has been involved most closely in the Rome dialogue, has written the following. This may help to put things into perspective and I commend it to you.


Anglican Church in America

(Traditional Anglican Communion)

Office of the House of Bishops

The Rt. Rev. George D. Langberg, Vice President

616 Eagle Valley Rd, Tuxedo, NY 10987

January 30, 2009


I am as excited as you are by the story going around, but we've been here before. In 2005, a story in "Inside the Vatican" (a reputable but unofficial news source) ran a similarly positive story, which ruffled some feathers in Rome. That was, of course, much earlier in the game, long before our famous (infamous to some) Oct 2007 petition.

When there is a real breakthrough, we will be receiving a copy of a letter, either from Cardinal Levada or from the Pope himself. We will not be hearing it first from a news article, either printed or on the web.

The bloggers will once again have a field day. My feeling is that we should handle this with kid gloves, especially for the next few days. If a press release is ultimately deemed necessary, it should be vetted by Abp Hepworth, since he's both a subject of the article and our prime contact with the Holy See. Until then, if asked about the news, I'd just say that it describes one of the options being considered, maybe even adding that we pray that it may be accurate. Then I'd add that we are prayerfully waiting for an official response to our petition for full communion with the Holy See, and have agreed to make no official announcements until such a response has been received.

I can't see any reason no to quietly send the article to some individuals, especially RC clergy, known to be sympathetic to our cause, but I'd hold back from the temptation to blast this around as if it had come from the Vatican .

If you would like to regularly receive official Vatican info, here's the link:

I pray that official word may soon render such restraint unnecessary.


Steve Cavanaugh said...


I'm not sure that you had a lesson to learn from this burst of "news" except that one must read very carefully. The story in The Record only said that the CDF would be (not had) recommending (not implementing) the status of personal prelature if the talks between TAC and Rome on unity concluded successfully.

That's a whole lot of ifs and nuance, and for those who have been watching this process, it's not all that surprising. The chances of establishment of a sui juris Church for the Anglican Christians, akin to the Eastern Churches, is not likely, as England was never a sui juris Church. But the personal prelature does grant a greater level of integrity to a group than the current Pastoral Provision does, and is the only structure currently foreseen by Latin Church Canon Law that makes sense. Not that the Pope couldn't institute a new structure, but I don't see that as likely.

I think that Bishop Langberg's caution about how people will learn of real development is true.

Anonymous said...

A popular RC blog "wdtprs" mentioned this a few days ago:

As many of you are undoubtedly aware, the Vatican is having an "emergency" situation with the SSPX and their Bishop Williamson. Were it not for this latest SSPX debacle, this would have received much more attention and analysis by the RC blogs. I'm sure it will, once this embarrassing situation is resolved with the Jewish world.

Anonymous said...

Mr Cavanaugh, I don't know quite what point you are trying to make. The CDF wouldn't recommend without having made a decision as to what to recommend. Nothing's been 'decided', so consequently, if that latter report is correct, then the terms of the recommendation are not yet settled. I admit I don't always read the stuff that flashes part on websites all that carefully, but I think I've got the gist of both the original story and the purported correction pretty well. In any case, since, as I understand it, the CDF isn't a parliament, and the Pope isn't a constitutional head of state who just rubber stamps parliament's recommendations, it is probably highly improper for anyone to publish reports of even a settled recommendation before it's been accepted. I'll go do something else until the joint communique appears.