Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Ecclesiastical bibs and bobs
Or anti-Romanism then and now
  • More on Moorestown: I didn’t get to take a picture inside Our Lady of Good Counsel Church (over 2,800 families) shown at right (maybe next time when I bring my own camera). The modernisation in this fine Victorian pile isn’t that offensive: a nice Laudian frontal, a hanging antique Sacrament light and the tabernacle front and centre in the wedding-cake reredos. Good taste reflecting this charming little upper-crust town dating from New Jersey’s colonial era (started by Quakers). Anyway this is from the church’s history: In 1866... the community acquired a parcel of land on the main street of Moorestown for their new church. Because of strong antipathy toward Catholics, a third party had to be engaged in the person of Peter Verga of Camden to negotiate the transaction. When asked what use he had for the land, Verga responded that he was acting as an agent for one who would open a business of repairing souls. Thinking only in terms of a shoe-repair shop, the seller readily signed over the deed. And so in the summer of 1867 a brick church was built in the heart of the village of Moorestown.
  • Anglicanism and Rome: ain’t gonna happen. Corporate reunion that is: here the Revd George Clifford and I agree. Anglo-Catholicism’s only future is outside Anglicanism in the Catholic churches towards which it was always orientated. Most of his criticism is nothing to do with the origin and scope of the papacy and rejects the Eastern churches just as much and for the same reason. The real issue is ecclesiological: does one believe in an infallible church divinely instituted as Rome and the Eastern communions believe, and ACism’s godfathers the Tractarians believed, or in Protestant private judgement, not really a church but a collection of individuals, what Clifford describes as his freedom as an Episcopalian? (ACism was about doctrine first and not as opinions to be tolerated; dressing up in church came second.) All of the theological controversial issues from the modern ones on sex and the sexes to the classic ‘Reformation’ ones are only symptoms of this big divide. Much of Anglican culture — how to write English prose for services for example (more) — is worth saving in the Catholic world and Rome is not being hypocritical saying so. As for the Episcopal Church, Anglicanism, liberal Protestantism and Protestantism in general, as Clifford says to the Romeward, heartfelt best wishes. The door’s always open: officially Catholics are willing to talk to teach the truth about the faith including that God made man founded and still speaks through (our holy mother) the church.
  • The Thames and the Tiber which covers among other things being fair to the Orthodox. From Fr Steel. Many thanks to Dr Tighe for a birthday gift a month early, a copy of Jalland’s The Church and the Papacy printed by the SPCK, and for bulletins from the Byzantine Catholic churches near him in upstate Pennsylvania including his own, St Josaphat’s Ukrainian.
  • Преобразился еси на горе, Христе Боже...
  • From the big blog of church porn ;) photojournal of Pope Benedict’s Catholic revival in the Roman communion, Godwardness (second photo).
  • A Roman chasuble in Lyon cathedral from Treat.
  • Benedict Seraphim on Rick Warren or liberals aren’t the only Protestants chasing trends: Sheesh, what is it with American Christians and “regaining credibility”?! Do we get to claim we’ve “regained credibility” when the media sez so? When we successfully pull of this mix of church-and-state activism thingy? When Rick Warren sells a bajillion more books? Come on. Also, Baptist Tripp’s home chapel has more images in it than mine. Believe it or not.

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