Friday, February 10, 2006

From Pontifications
Catholicism and the ecumenical adventure
The churches of the ‘Reformation’ are not really interested in unity
When Catholics talk about unity between Catholics and Protestants, they mean an ever-deepening consensus in the faith, ultimately leading to eucharistic fellowship.
Which of course really means ‘become Catholic’. Ecumenism with Protestants, who haven’t got ‘churches’ (the current Vaticanspeak for them is ‘ecclesial communities’, which in plain English means ‘not churches’) because they lack the apostolic ministry and the Eucharist, is really ultimately about catechesis/instruction: you-come-in-ism. (‘You mean you don’t believe you earn your way into heaven or worship Mary like a goddess?’) Corporate reunion is only possible or desirable with groups like the Orthodox. Which, ideally, is not to say that everybody coming in has to adopt present-day RC practice. (Heavens, no!) Bring in sturdy, singable, orthodox hymns and the idiom of the Book of Common Prayer and King James Bible (fundamental texts of the English language that share with ancient rites an objectivity and Godwardness), and there is even latitude for non-doctrinal, disciplinary matters like the ordination of married men (as the Christian East practises it).

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