Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Randy Sly

4/1/2012 (3 years ago)

Catholic Online (

Fr. Robert Mercer first gained notoriety in 1970 for his stand against apartheid in South Africa

Fr. Robert's witness to the truth of the Catholic faith, and his commitment to the unity of all Christians, has led to this very happy day when we can welcome him as a brother Priest in the Catholic Church. We look forward to his renewed ministry now - bringing many rich gifts from the Anglican tradition into the Catholic Church

The Ordinary, Monsignor Keith Newton and Fr. Robert Mercer, former Anglican Bishop

The Ordinary, Monsignor Keith Newton and Fr. Robert Mercer, former Anglican Bishop


By Randy Sly

Catholic Online (

4/1/2012 (3 years ago)

Published in Europe

Keywords: anglican ordinariate, our lady of walsingham, chair of st. peter, anglican use, Keith Newton, Robert Mercer

WASHINGTON, DC (Catholic Online) - A sixth former Anglican bishop was ordained to the priesthood in the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham at St. John's Cathedral in Portsmouth on Monday, the Feast of the Annunciation. Robert Mercer, 77, was ordained by the Right Reverend Alan Hopes, the Auxiliary Bishop of Westminster, who is also a convert from the Church of England.

During his homily, Bishop Hopes was quoted by the U.K. Catholic Herald as saying: "Robert, your life has been one of profound commitment and witness. Your formation and ministry within the Anglican tradition have provided you with a solid spiritual bedrock on which your life has been built . You have been a bold witness to Christ and to the truths of Catholic Christianity - often at great cost to yourself.

"Coming into communion with the Catholic Church through the ordinariate, you bring with you some of the spiritual riches that are to be found in the Anglican church. You take on a new mission in your ministry of bridge building - that of building bridges between the Catholic Church and the ecclesial communities of the Anglican tradition."

Mercer first gained notoriety in 1970 when he, along with other Anglican priests were deported from South Africa for standing against apartheid. A native of Zimbabwe, he later served as Bishop of Matabeleland, in his home country, in the Anglican Province of Central Africa. He was bishop for 11 years before leaving the Anglican Communion to join the Anglican Catholic Church of Canada, one of the jurisdictions of the Traditional Anglican Communion. He served as metropolitan bishop from 1988 to 2005 before retiring in England.

Monsignor Keith Newton, the Ordinary (leader) of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham, issued the following statement regarding the ordination. "Fr. Robert's witness to the truth of the Catholic faith, and his commitment to the unity of all Christians, has led to this very happy day when we can welcome him as a brother Priest in the Catholic Church. His ministry in Africa, in Canada and here in Portsmouth, has been exemplary, and we look forward to his renewed ministry now - bringing many rich gifts from the Anglican tradition into the Catholic Church."

According to the Ordinariate, Fr. Mercer will serve with the Isle of Wight & Portsmouth Ordinariate Group, led by Fr Jonathan Redvers Harris, and will have particular responsibilities for those worshipping at the historic Portsmouth church of St Agatha's, Landport, who hope to be received into the full communion of the Catholic Church this Easter.

The Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham, in England and Wales was first structure based on the Apostolic Constitution "Anglicanorum coetibus" of 2009 which allowed Anglicans to become Catholics while retaining the best of their patrimony. Officially established by the Holy Father in 2011, they were joined one year later by the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter in the United States.

Randy Sly is the Associate Editor of Catholic Online and the CEO/Associate Publisher for the Northern Virginia Local Edition of Catholic Online ( He is a former Archbishop of the Charismatic Episcopal Church who laid aside that ministry to enter into the full communion of the Catholic Church.


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'

Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for October 2015
That human trafficking, the modern form of slavery, may be eradicated.
Evangelization: That with a missionary spirit the Christian communities of Asia may announce the Gospel to those who are still awaiting it.


More Europe

SHOCK SHOW: Sacrilegious art exhibit in Spain uses 240 stolen consecrated hosts Watch

Image of Photos of the theft of the Hosts and their placement on the ground are shown in a public art gallery in Pamplona.

By Catholic News Agency

Critics of Pamplona's city council say it deliberately attacked Catholics and broke Spanish law by using city property to display a sacrilegious art exhibit with more than 240 stolen consecrated Hosts. Madrid, Spain (CNA) - The Spanish artist Abel Azcona stole ... continue reading

French Hostage Situation: Two armed suspects engage in shootout with French police Watch

Image of French police engaged in a shootout with two suspects armed with Kalashnikovs (Not pictured).


Two suspects armed with Kalashnikov rifles engaged in a shootout with French police in Toubaix, France. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The suspects are believed to have taken a bank director and his family hostage, but very little is currently known.[media ... continue reading

Vatican corruption: Journalists stand trial Watch

Image of Gianluigi Nuzzi and Emiliano Fittipaldi must stand trial at the Vatican for publishing confidential documents (Reuters).


Following the publication of books claiming the Holy See was mismanaged and spoiled through corruption, five people went on trial at the Vatican on Tuesday. Two of the five on trial were Italian Journalists Gianluigi Nuzzi and Emiliano Fittipaldi, neither of whom ... continue reading

Undercover reporter reveals secret FEMALE ISIS organization in Britain Watch

Image of One veiled ISIS sympathizer was filmed during the undercover investigation (Channel 4).


In a new British documentary titled The British Women Supporters Unveiled, one young female reporter goes undercover to infiltrate a secret Muslim organization designed to garner sympathy for the Islamic State. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The reporter, who uses ... continue reading

OUTRAGEOUS: Find out why The Lord's Prayer was BANNED from Just Pray movie theater ad Watch

Image of


An advertisement featuring the Lord's Prayer has been banned from movie theaters in England. According to the Church of England, the policy that prevents the prayer advertisement did not exist when they began production on the commercial. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic ... continue reading

Swiss farmer finds 4,000 extremely rare Roman coins in his orchard Watch

Image of The cache of coins is estimated to be more than 1,700 years old.


A Swiss farmer was tilling his orchard in Ueken, in the northern canton of Aargau, Switzerland, when he spotted something shiny on the ground. He had inadvertently stumbled across a treasure trove of Roman-era coins - 4,166 in all, some dating as back as 274 ... continue reading

Five people indicted by Vatican in 'Vati-leaks' scandal Watch

Image of Journalists Gianluigi Nuzzi and Emiliano Fittipaldi (pictured), had both recently published books, citing specific Vatican documents detailing waste, mismanagement, and greed.


A judge, rendering a decision in a scandal involving Vatican finances has indicted five people, which include two journalists and a Vatican monsignor. Information linking the Vatican to financial malfeasance, as well as related graft and corruption called ... continue reading

Massacre in France is a Piecemeal Third World War, and Jesus is the Path to Peace Watch

Image of With tenderness, Jesus looked out from the Mount of Olives and saw the Holy City of Jerusalem. How he loved - and still loves - that special City. Then, Jesus wept. The Word Incarnate, made a man like us in all things but sin, cried. He knew that the City of Jerusalem would soon be overtaken and destroyed by the armies of Titus. He wept the tears of Love - and revealed the compassion of His Sacred Heart

By Deacon Keith Fournier

Do we recognize the time of our own visitation? God is present in our world today. He wants to  speak, to lead, to serve, to heal and to save. He is not to blame for the mess we are in. We are!  Those who purport to be representing their "God"  as ... continue reading

ISIS targets Vatican -Italy's U.S. Embassy warns American travelers to stay away Watch

Image of ISIS released a poorly-photoshopped image of their flag flying atop the Vatican.


Italy's United States Embassy issued a security alert to Americans in Europe as ISIS reveals attack plans on specific buildings including the Vatican and the La Scala opera house in Milan. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - In an email with the subject line "Security ... continue reading

SICK, EVIL GESTURE: ISIS gives social media campaign sickening spin Watch

Image of Islamic State, along with other sick individuals and groups, are offering a transparent overlay of the French tricolors - with a muddy boot footprint, to show their support for last week's terrorist attacks in Paris.


It's an especially diabolical move intended to disrupt the activities of the social media generation. Encouraged to show their solidarity with the nation of France, users on Facebook and Instagram have been encouraged to cover their profile pictures with a transparency ... continue reading

All Europe News


Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

  • Advent Wreath Prayer HD
  • Prayer For Courage HD
  • Daily Readings for Wednesday, November 25, 2015
  • 'Domestic terrorism': 5 People shot during Black Lives Matter protest ...
  • Couple heartbroken after doctor performs abortion without mother's ...
  • 5 unbelievable times children taught us to be better human beings
  • St. Catherine of Alexandria: Saint of the Day for Wednesday, November ...

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Daniel 2:31-45
31 'You have had a vision, Your Majesty; this is what you saw: a statue, ... Read More

Psalm, Daniel 3:57, 58, 59, 60, 61
57 Bless the Lord, all the Lord's creation: praise and glorify him for ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 21:5-11
5 When some were talking about the Temple, remarking how it was adorned ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for November 24th, 2015 Image

St. Andrew Dung Lac
November 24: Through the missionary efforts of various ... Read More