54 Priests for UK Ordinariate, Episcopal Parish to Enter US Catholic Church
the guidance of the Holy Spirit in their faith journey."
In fall 2009, Pope Benedict XVI authorized the formation of "ordinariates" for former Anglican parishes seeking to enter the Catholic Church as a congregation. An ordinariate is a geographic region similar to a diocese, though typically is national in scope. Until one is established for the United States, St. Luke's congregation, which has approximately 100 members, will come under the care of the Archdiocese of Washington.
"This was a transition achieved in a spirit of pastoral sensitivity and mutual respect," said Bishop Chane. "Christians move from one church to another with far greater frequency than in the past, sometimes as individuals, sometimes as groups. I was glad to be able to meet the spiritual needs of the people and priest of St. Luke's in a way that respects the tradition and polity of both of our Churches."
Under the terms of a letter of agreement signed last week with the Episcopal Diocese of Washington, the St. Luke congregation will continue to worship in their current church, at 4006 53rd Street, Bladensburg. The agreement is a lease with a purchase option. The community will begin preparations for reception into the Catholic Church later this year while Rev. Mark Lewis, rector of St. Luke's, hopes to begin the process to be ordained a Catholic priest.
"I am deeply grateful to Cardinal Wuerl and to Bishop Chane for their support throughout this discernment. We look forward to continuing to worship in the Anglican tradition, while at the same time being in full communion with the Holy See of Peter," Rev. Lewis said.
The first ordinariate was established in England in January 2011. Ordinariate parishes are fully Catholic, while retaining aspects of their Anglican heritage and liturgical tradition. Cardinal Wuerl is the Vatican's representative for the implementation of Anglicanorum coetibus (pronounced Anglican-orum chay-tee-boose) in the United States, the papal document authorizing the establishment of ordinariates. This document and other material are online here"
Until the US Ordinariate is erected, which should be very soon, St. Luke's will be under the care of the Archdiocese of Washington. We have covered the emergence of the Ordinariate for groups of Anglicans seeking to come into the full communion of the Catholic Church from its inception. We will continue to do so as this gift for the whole Catholic Church spreads throughout the whole world. We are living in a new missionary age and Pope Benedict XVI is the Pope of Christian Unity.
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Pope Benedict XVI's Prayer Intentions for January 2013
General Intention: The Faith of Christians. That in this Year of Faith Christians may deepen their knowledge of the mystery of Christ and witness joyfully to the gift of faith in him.
Missionary Intention: Middle Eastern Christians. That the Christian communities of the Middle East, often discriminated against, may receive from the Holy Spirit the strength of fidelity and perseverance.
Keywords: Anglican, ordinariate, Episcopal, Our Lady of Walsingham, Cardinal Donald Wuerl, Monsignor Keith Newton, St. Lukes, Deacon Keith Fournier
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