Melbourne, Australia, Jun 15, 2012 / 15:22 pm
On June 15 Pope Benedict officially erected the Ordinariate of Our Lady of the Southern Cross for Anglican groups and individuals who want to enter full communion with the Catholic Church.
Archbishop Dennis J. Hart of Melbourne, the president of the Australian Catholic Bishops' Conference, assured former Anglicans of "a warm welcome in the Catholic Church throughout Australia," and offered his "respect and admiration" for the "gifts" that Anglicans bring.
"For them and for us, this is a very special moment on which we pray the blessings of the Holy Spirit and the prayers of Our Lady of the Southern Cross," he said.
In an interesting twist, Pope Benedict named former Anglican bishop Harry Entwistle as the first ordinary of the group, making his appointment effective as soon as he was ordained a Catholic priest, which happened on June 15.
Archbishop Hart welcomed Fr. Entwistle, saying he and his people have "made a long journey."