Tuesday, November 15, 2011

In the New Year, a New Ordinariate

Here below, the fulltext (as prepared for delivery) of Cardinal Donald Wuerl's report to the US bishops on the implementation of Anglicanorum coetibus, highlighted by the announcement that the Stateside jurisdiction for groups of former Anglicans will be formally established by Rome on 1 January 2012.

In addition to the report by the DC cardinal -- who serves as the Holy See's American delegate for the project -- Bishop Kevin Vann of Fort Worth was named the national delegate for the Pastoral Provision, the Rome-chartered program that allows for the ordination of married clergy from other denominations, now with the exception of the Ordinariate, whose admissions for Catholic ordination are conducted under a separate process.

On the announcement of the Ordinariate's impending erection and his new duties, Vann posted the following on his blog:
For the Catholic Church in the United States, today marks an important movement towards greater diversity and at the same time a reaffirmation of the universality of what Jesus Christ established. On the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God, which falls on Sunday January 1, 2012, a Personal Ordinariate for former Anglicans (Episcopalians) who wish to be fully initiated into the Catholic Church will be erected. This follows the January 15, 2011 establishment of a Personal Ordinariate in England and comes just before an official announcement about progress towards the erection of a Personal Ordinariate in Australia.

Donald Cardinal Wuerl, Ecclesiastical Delegate for the establishment of a Personal Ordinariate in the United States, prepared remarks for the full body of Bishops at the USCCB meeting in Baltimore. Many questions remain to be answered and there is no rush to frenetically and prematurely answer questions to hypothetical situations which may or may not bear out. For the moment, what we know is that the Holy Father, in an audience granted to His Eminence William Cardinal Leveda, approved the erection of an Ordinariate in the United States.

Along with the announcement of an Ordinariate, Cardinal Wuerl also announced that I have been appointed the new Ecclesiastical Delegate for the Pastoral Provision by the CDF. I succeed Archbishop John J. Myers of Newark and am grateful for the trust placed in me to participate in this historic fraternal embrace of those Anglicans who seek the same. Thank you to Cardinal Levada, Cardinal Wuerl and Archbishop Myers and so many others for their support and friendship as I move forward on this journey
In late September, Vann received the nation's first group of former Anglicans to enter full communion under the Anglicanorum provisions. Including two ex-Episcopal priests and their families, the group was just the first of what's expected to be the Ordinariate's most significant geographic wave, hailing from the US' de facto Anglo-Catholic seat in Texas.