Loading
Weigel: New provision marks ‘end of an era’ in Anglican-Catholic relations
George Weigel
George Weigel
Facebook Twitter Google+ Pinterest Addthis

.- Catholic commentator George Weigel says that the Vatican’s announcement of a new provision for Anglican groups who desire to convert to Catholicism is an “end of an era” in Anglican-Catholic relations, showing a widening “theological gulf” between Anglican leadership and the Christian tradition.

Writing in The Washington Post's "On Faith" blog, Weigel recounts how Anglican-Catholic relations reached a peak around the time of the Second Vatican Council.

However, in the following decades some Anglican leaders appeared to be distancing themselves from the apostolic tradition on the priesthood and the sacraments.

Weigel discusses an exchange of letters in the 1980s between Pope John Paul II, Anglican Archbishop of Canterbury Robert Runcie and Cardinal Johannes Willebrands, then the head of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity.

Asked by the Catholic prelates to explain why parts of the Anglican Communion had decided to ordain women as priests, Weigel recalls that Archbishop Runcie replied in “largely sociological, rather than theological terms.” The then-senior prelate in the Church of England cited women’s changing roles in business, culture and politics as a justification for the novel practice.

When the exchange of letters ended in 1986, a “parting of the ways” had been reached. Catholic authorities believed that apostolic tradition precluded the ordination of women to the priesthood, while Archbishop Runcie and similarly-minded Anglicans, in Weigel’s view, believed that “contemporary human insights into gender roles trumped apostolic tradition and necessitated a development of both doctrine and practice.”

“Rome could not accept that as a legitimate development of Christian self-understanding,” Weigel explains, reporting that Catholic leaders feared the new Anglican approach would cause the revision of their teachings on many other issues, such as sexual morality.

With Pope Benedict’s announcement of a new Anglican provision, Weigel writes at On Faith, Anglicans have been offered a “path into full communion” with the Catholic Church that “honors the distinctiveness of their spiritual and liturgical traditions.”

Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

An Indian contribution to the Vatican's Synod on the Family
An Indian contribution to the Vatican's Synod on the Family
Christ Cathedral CNA video Sept 2014
Alejandro Bermudez of CNA accepts ice bucket challenge
'The Real Albania,' remembering those who fled
Pope Francis in Albania, "one of the most important visits of the post-communist era in Albania"
Pope Francis greets paralyzed man who risked all to see him
Franciscans on the banks of the Tiber in Rome, working for the New Evangelization
Pilgrimage from Czech Republic to Assisi and Rome for intentions
Testimony of young Indian who met Pope in Korea
Preparations of the Closing Mass of 6th Asian Youth Day
Missionary of Charity, Korea
Testimony of Christian Love during Pope's Visit to Korea
Religious Sisters in South Korea react to Pope Francis kissing a baby
Warm atmosphere during Holy Mass at Daejeon World Cup Stadium
Images inside Pope Francis flight to South Korea
The tombs of the early Christians
Missionaries of Africa, called "the White Fathers"
Italian youth give testimony after mission to Peru
Interview with Iraqi Ambassador to the Holy See on the persecution of Christians
New book 'The Vatican unknown'
Oct
25

Liturgical Calendar

October 25, 2014

Saturday of the Twenty-Ninth Week in Ordinary Time

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Lk 13:1-9

Gospel
Date
10/25/14
10/24/14
10/23/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Eph 4: 7-16
Gospel:: Lk 13: 1-9

Saint of the Day

St. Romuald »

Saint
Date
10/25/14

Homily of the Day

Lk 13:1-9

Homily
Date
10/25/14
10/24/14
10/23/14