Bishop Lopes’ short interview with Salt and Light TV

During the Canadian Bishops’ plenary meeting in Cornwall, Ontario, this week, Bishop Steven Lopes was interviewed by Sebastian Gomes of Salt and Light TV. (Interestingly, both men have Portuguese names that I would prefer to pronounce “Lopesh” and “Gomesh”.) The interview begins at the 11 min. & 19 sec. mark.

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6 Responses to Bishop Lopes’ short interview with Salt and Light TV

  1. EPMS says:

    What did you think of his response to the interviewer’s main question, about maintaining Anglican identity? Bp Lopes’ explanation was very nuanced, but there didn’t seem to ba anything specific to Anglican Patrimony. Is this the line, that the current Ordinariates are just templates for the approach the Church should take in welcoming those from other denominations?

    • Rev22:17 says:

      EPMS asked: Is this the line, that the current Ordinariates are just templates for the approach the Church should take in welcoming those from other denominations?

      I don’t agree with the word “just” in this context, but there is no doubt that the current ordinariates do constitute prototypes also for welcoming Christians of various Protestant traditions into the full communion of the Catholic Church. The objective clearly is to provide an environment that can nurture their familiar expressions of Christian faith and their distinct liturgical and pastoral traditions within the Roman Catholic Church.

      That said, there’s no doubt that much will depend upon the manner in which other Christians come into the full communion of the Catholic Church. A handful of parishes is not enough to form and to sustain an ordinariate, even if the parishes are rather large — and in this context, note that some so-called “megachurches” have tens of thousands of communicants. Rather, a handful of congregations will become personal parishes of the respective local dioceses in the same manner as the so-called “Anglican Use” parishes erected under the so-called “pastoral provision.” But where there are a couple dozen congregations or more of the same tradition, the establishment of ordinariates, or similar ecclesial structures, is now normative. Thus, the present ordinariates are pointing the way to full Christian unity — a profound reality that one ought not diminish by applying the word “just” to it.

      Norm.

      • EPMS says:

        Norm has expressed similar thoughts in the past. My sense was not that Bp Lopes envisioned further denominational Ordinariates, rather that he saw the existing Ordinariates as entities which conveyed the message that becoming Catholic did not mean repudiating your previous experience as a Christian. Had a few thousand Presbyterians formed an Ordinariate, it would have served the same purpose. There is no need to create further bodies of this sort. We’ve got the idea.

      • Rev22:17 says:

        EPMS seems to be missing the point here. The Reformed/Presbyterian tradition has its own distinct liturgical heritage and patrimony, which is not the same as any other. A group of Reformed or Presbyterian Christians would not fit into the existing ordinariates for former Anglicans because the Anglican liturgical heritage and patrimony it is not their liturgical heritage and patrimony. Rather, they will need their own hierarchy and their ecclesial structures — which undoubtedly will form as ordinariates whenever such a structure is sustainable — to preserve their distinct customs within the Catholic Church.

        Norm.

  2. EPMS says:

    But my point was not that Presbyterians could/should join the existing Anglican Ordinariates, or aspire to have one of their own. It was that Bp Lopes seemed to be saying that the Ordinariates function primarily as a sign that becoming Catholic does not mean rejecting your previous Christian experience, whatever it may have been. Thus they are important even if the vast majority of former Anglicans who are now Catholic have chosen not to participate in them. Frankly I think that is an important point to make about an enterprise which seems destined to be niche.

    • Rev22:17 says:

      I rather suspect that many former Anglicans who have come into the full communion of the Catholic Church either (1) don’t live near an ordinariate community or (2) simply are not aware of an ordinariate community that might be near to them — and many might not even be aware that the ordinariates have come into being. Diocesan pastors theoretically have a pastoral duty to inform the members of their parishes who might benefit from the ordinariate, or from a nearby ordinariate congregation, of its existence, just as they would inform their parishioners of other programs that the parishioners might find to be spiritually beneficial, but I doubt that very many diocesan pastors actually have attempted to do so. The result is that former Anglicans who have come into the full communion of the Catholic Church through diocesan parishes typically will learn of the ordinariate, or of a nearby ordinariate congregation, by happenstance over the course of many years, producing a steady trickle of new members over that period rather than a surge that would stabilize a smaller ordinariate community.

      Unfortunately, this pastoral failure is detrimental to both the ordinariate congregations and the former Anglicans who would benefit spiritually from reconnecting with their heritage.

      Norm.

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