Sunday, August 23, 2015

Sunday rituals, the Dutch touch, and classic cars

  • Mass: Respice, Domine, in testamentum tuam. Should that be "testamentum tuum"? Almighty and everlasting God, give unto us the increase of faith, hope, and charity; and, that we may obtain that which thou dost promise, make us to love that which thou dost command. To Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ. Arise, go thy way: thy faith hath made thee whole.
  • My other Sunday-morning ritual. Before Mass, a local radio station plays Elvis for hours so I listen in with my '56 NordMende lit up. I'm not a mad Elvis fan; he was a tremendous raw talent but unschooled as a singer. His early recordings are amazing. The girls screamed because of his sex appeal as they did for Sinatra but he wasn't culturally destructive like the Beatles. Naughty, a typical struggling Southern sinner who knew he was convicted before God, not a subversive.
  • Does Fr. Hunwicke believe in the Dutch touch? The thread of hope that made Anglo-Papalism plausible after Apostolicae Curae. (Anglo-Papalists: what most assumed Anglo-Catholics were but in a way the opposite of A-Cs: not "Anglicanism, as is, is Catholic" but "we want to come into the church.") As the church seemed to say when conditionally ordaining Fr. John Jay Hughes (now retired in the Archdiocese of St. Louis) and Msgr. Graham Leonard (who didn't want an ordinariate)? Fr. Hughes for a personal reason (failed attempt to reconcile with his father, an Episcopal priest who thought Catholic converts were sacrilegious for denying Anglican orders); Msgr. Leonard for a post-Vatican II ecumenical one (being an ex-Anglican bishop). Of course I'm with the church on this (we never really accept such claims; conditional ordination does the same thing absolute ordination does so no harm done) but, having benefited from Anglo-Catholicism (its semi-congregationalism and, in its American version, liturgical conservatism introduced me to pre-conciliar Catholic practice and thus its thought; pretty ironic for a liberal denomination, but hey, the English like irony), I'm not offended if he believes somehow the men who formed him were bishops and priests. I'd say sure, God created valid orders but isn't limited to them, so grace was possible but it wasn't really orders. So no, they're not really bishops, etc., but "Fakedty-fake!" isn't appropriate. "Bishop" and "Father" as courtesy titles to honor their good faith? No problem. By the way, through their Episcopal tie, the liberal Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (who aren't American evangelicals; Evangelische is an old German label for Lutheran) now claims that touch (though apostolic succession isn't considered necessary in Lutheranism). Seems to push the Western view of holy orders outside the church to the limit. But we say from the Anglicans on there are no orders.
  • Old cars in an old town. Flemington, NJ's monthly summer classic-car shows. The photo above is actually of their Methodist church, built in the 1880s when Gothic became fashionable among low-church Protestants. Donna snapped this fine portrait of Nellie the border collie, whom we met a year ago just rescued from a shelter. She's still wary as you can see but sweet. The area's best General Lee clone was there, signed by show cast members. More on the appeal of the Southern cause.


  1. If Anglican orders are invalid what shall we say of modern Roman ones? It's an absolute scandal that Rome continues to uphold Apostolicae Curae despite at least two changes to the Roman Pontifical since 1896 (notwithstanding the appalling scholarship of AC). I'll stick with Saepius Officio, and my position that the Roman communion has absolutely no right to have clergy in England.

    1. As I understand it, the key is whether there is heretical intent, which Cranmer had and the Popes didn't, even if you don't like a new or revised Roman ordinal. Cranmer basically ended up in the Reformed camp, not even Lutheran about the Eucharist. He meant to do away with the notion of the priest re-presenting Christ's sacrifice, offering him for the quick and the dead. Obviously, the church doesn't have that objective. Vatican II didn't change our doctrine, because such can't.

      Your last phrase is admirably one-true-church sounding, logically what the old high churchmen wanted as THE church of the realm, opposing any "Italian mission." (Now the Italian Mission to the Polish? A development post-Communism since I was last in your country.) The branch theory isn't really relativistic: they thought they were in the Catholic family but the true church thanks to being "reformed" too; we and the Orthodox are in grave error. They thought the Lesser Eastern Churches were out of the running, beyond the pale, for being Christological heretics, sort of like Mormons with claimed apostolic succession if you can imagine such a thing. I like the new idea that those splits were just big misunderstandings. Fits our view all along of valid orders.

      By the way, our criteria for valid orders: Trinitarian orthodoxy so basic the Nestorians pass, unbroken claimed apostolic succession — them what got it don't need to prove it with charts, etc., and unbroken true teaching about the Eucharist. That pretty much defines the great Catholic family: the true church that subsistit in Catholicism and our estranged brethren, mostly in the East.

      Now that I think of it, the challenge to the church in England (Catholicism after emancipation, not the C of E) in Newman's later years was to get the most benefit (for Christ) out of a society still Christian, giving the most help to its people, but one that has a "church" hostile to us. How to keep one and neutralize the threat from the other. Attack the C of E and risk making England even less Christian after the "Enlightenment" and Industrial Revolution. (Which Newman wrote about: at least the C of E was keeping England Christian at the time.) Plus the threat of renewed persecution from the state. Give in to the C of E and there's no true church left in the land. (The C of E now: Episcopalians, liberal high churchmen or Modernists with incense, such as Rowan Williams, and Evangelicals, basically the same as your Free Church Protestants, having changed from "Presbyterians with Prayer Books" to something like American evangelicalism, except with some liberals in it.)

      Continuing below.

    2. As you know, in Eastern Orthodoxy the question is moot as neither Apostolicae Curae nor Saepius Officio (the Church of England trying to sound Catholic answering Leo XIII) apply. If it's outside what they consider the true church (themselves = Byzantium = their countries and empires), it's void. So in principle, outside Eastern Orthodoxy there are no orders. We, on the other hand, recognize them, the rest of the non-Catholic Christian East, and conservative Old Catholics; generous if I may say so. Recognizing that at heart we still have a shared faith. Beats worshipping Byzantium, Greece, Russia, etc., as good as those things are in themselves.

      Because you don't seem keen on the Byzantine Rite, it sounds like you might be interested in Western Rite Orthodoxy, as Australian Fr. Michael Mansbridge-Wood of ROCOR and others are trying to do in Britain. Good luck with that; you'll desperately need it. The Greeks (most émigré Orthodox in both our countries) and the Antiochians officially don't allow it (I understand ex-Anglican Fr. Gregory Hallam, dean of the Antiochians in the UK, is dead against it), and at heart the Russians don't want it either. (In ROCOR it's either heavily russified or there's an ersatz middle-church Anglican version. As long as it's not Roman. We, on the other hand, have a few Catholics doing Russian practice unlatinized.) If trying to be Catholic wore you out, you'd burn out twice as fast there.

      I respect Western high churchmanships that don't quite accept Catholicism, partly because they're not anti-Eastern like the East is anti-Western. Such as Continuing Anglicans and high-church confessional (conservative) Lutherans such as our cousins in the Missouri Synod (another true-church claim: they think they ARE the Catholic Church because we fell into grave error). All I can say to that is look at the track records of both Anglicanism and Old Catholicism, obviously dead ends. (Lutheranism is close to us but obviously Protestant: no bishops and no Mass.) The Tractarians only had low churchmen to worry about, not women priests and gay weddings, and I seriously doubt "the true continuation of the Roman Catholic Church (as opposed to a Vatican power-mad since 1870)" would be a Dutch rump sect with women priests and soon gay weddings. The Catholic Church, on the other hand, has fulfilled the Great Commission and is spiritually independent of any state.

      The C of E is now an old nag no longer keeping the country Christian and the Orthodox are an immigrant cult of ethnicities. Sure you don't want "Roman" priests in your land?

      Obviously I can't tell you what to do (nor would I want the state to make you do anything) but I'm just laying out the facts as I see them.

    3. As I see it, there are only two reasons that the Church would undertake a new mission to a country that is already Christian. One is the death of the existing Episcopate, so that the mission would restore valid apostolic succession. The other is national apostasy. I cannot see that the restoration of the Roman hierarchy in 1850 met those criteria at all and the intrusion of the Roman hierarchy (not to mention its arrogance, epitomised by Manning) is actually defiant of the canons of General Councils of the Church (Ephesus, canon viii, for example), as well as schismatic. This is why I would see all bishops not of the Church of England banished from the United Kingdom, that includes Orthodox bishops.

      I don't believe in the branch theory, and I do not believe that the Protestant Church of England is the true church (who the hell would!), but I am convinced that it is a real church, with some validly ordained bishops, priests and deacons. Just like some of the elderly Roman clergy. It's laughable to me that some Traddie Roman "priests" look down their noses at their Anglican contemporaries when their own orders are dubious enough; celebrating, as they do, the so-called "Traditional Latin Mass," dressing up as subdeacons when they were never ordained to that order, and so on. I do not recognise the validity of Roman orders after 1968, which puts pope Francis in a funny position having been ordained, I believe, in 1969. Even Benedict was at least a priest, if not a valid bishop. That has nothing to do with my view of the Second Vatican Council, with its faults and fruits. I actually rather like Vatican II.

      I used to be interested in Western Rite Orthodoxy, but not anymore. Most practitioners of that weird cult don't know what they're doing. I did have a mind to undertake an huge labour, design WRO myself based on mediaeval liturgical sources, &c but I gave up after drafting the first four months of an ordo. It would just look like Frankenstein's monster.

      These days my sympathies lie with the Greek Orthodox Church (that's Greek, not Constantinopolitan or Antiochene), Byzantine rite. But I am as yet too lazy to do anything about it.

    4. It sounds like you'd like to take the part of the C of E you consider valid and declare it the continuation of the ancient and medieval Catholic church in the land, purified of Romanism, as a kind of conservative Old Catholicism. A lot like the old high churchmen but they didn't question anybody's orders in the C of E. Chances are the C of E will never purge its ranks as you'd like. Of course your idea of the real church in England doesn't square with Greek Orthodoxy, nor does recognizing "elderly Roman clergy," and after all you said you'd like to get rid of the UK's Orthodox bishops as well as ours. So you're settling for Greek Orthodoxy as a second-best solution, not because you're convinced by its teachings? That's not fair to the Orthodox.

    5. You're right, the C of E won't purge its ranks. If it were up to me, all women clergy would be laicised and excommunicated and the Prayer Book would be restored but, as with the so-called "Extraordinary Form," it just won't happen. I do sincerely believe, however, that some aspects of the Church of England are in genuine continuity with the mediaeval Church of England, even if they are just skeletons now. Westminster Abbey, for example, is simultaneously the best and the worst church in England; the best because of the Shrine of the Confessor, preserved intact against all odds, and the daily cursus of the Office there uninterrupted for centuries. The worst because...well, you know the reasons. But these aspects are continuous in a way that the Anglo-Romans were just foreign, even the old recusants.

      Maybe I'm not fair? My view of the Church of England is inextricably linked with my view of immigration to this country. As Ruth said, "thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God, whither thou goest I will go," &c. The presence of Christians of competing confessions is destructive of unity; like my old neighbours Tony and Irene, known to us from infancy as "the Baptists."

      Regarding Orthodoxy, is it not enough for me to say, as Margery Kempe did, "I believe in Jesus Christ, which suffered death and harrowed hell, as I have heard mine elders tell." But there's more. I pray almost daily for a return of the Roman Emperor. I believe that the Seven General Councils are binding on all Christians. There's so much more but , as I'm sure you think of America, this country is finished, and has been for at least fifty years. I'm thinking about moving to one of the Greek islands (Ithaka most likely) and just thinking of the Church of England as contained only in the Prayer Book, the King James Bible and the empty old curious buildings that used to be churches but will eventually be community centres, blocks of flats and museums. At least then I can be Orthodox where Orthodoxy is natural, and has a right to have bishops.

    6. John, Anglican orders were not declared invalid based upon the personal belief of some Anglican churchmen (otherwise all orders would be invalid if based upon personal theology), but upon a defect of intention in the ordination services. Unfortunately, this defect of intention can just as easily, liturgically anyway, be applied quite nicely to the new ordination services of the novus ordo.

      I am surprised that Patrick has any interest in the Greeks, they do elevations of the Blessed Sacrament just after the words of institution. He is completely correct about the so-called western rite Orthodox, they are clueless about liturgy. It has been stated that the novus ordo is a committee liturgy, whilst most of, especially the Russian, invented western liturgies are not by a committee made, but by less than well educated individuals.

    7. Re: your first paragraph, that's what I meant; I was using "Cranmer" unconsciously as a synecdoche like "the Pope" or "the Vatican." Like "Luther" when you mean Lutheranism. Should have been clearer. Cranmer's unbelief became Anglican teaching as seen in the ordinal; that broke the link of succession.

    8. But one could say just the same about some of the "reformers" of Vatican II who objectively destroyed the Roman/western tradition as well. I sincerely doubt they were in any sense Catholics; hence, what Patrick is saying is that the orders and validity of the novus ordo must be just as suspect as is the Book of Common Prayer. Actually, when one considers the older Scottish BCP, the 1928 American and English BCP and the Canadian one, such BCPs are far more Catholic than anything one finds on Sunday morning in the bland life of the novus ordo and some of its more esoteric canons of the Mass.

    9. In my opinion, the best arguments in support of Apostolicae Curae are to be found in *Anglican Orders and Defect of Intention* by Francis Clark, SJ (London, 1956: Longmans, Green and Co.).

      One often reads statements along the lines of " this defect of intention can just as easily, liturgically anyway, be applied quite nicely to the new ordination services of the novus ordo," but I really don't see how. Clark argues that the Cranmer's Anglican Ordinal, and those rites deriving from it, embody and reflect the defective heretical views of their framer as denying the sacerdotal nature of the episcopate/priesthood, and so are incapable of conveying or conferring Catholic Holy Orders. There are other ordination rites and practices (or so I have read) which could be considered as vague or even inadequate theologically (from a Catholic point-of-view) as the Anglican ones (the example frequently adduced is that of the Ethiopian Church) but the difference is that the Ethiopian theology of Holy Orders (insofar as it has been expounded theologically and/or embodied in practice) is fully compatible with that of the Catholic Church, and so in no way can be censured as embodying and expressing a defective (heretical) intention. I don't see how this censure applies to the Novus Ordo ordination rites, since there is no evidence, either in the rites themselves or in what we know about their composition, that they were meant to embody a heretical theology. Doubtless they reflected both archaeologism gone mad and the now-discredited enthusiasm for "Hippolytus" (or pseudo-Hippolytus), but they hardly be said to constitute in any sense a denial of the Catholic doctrine of Holy Orders. Read, for instance, chapter 15 ("Ordination Rites") of Dom Bernard Botte's *From Silence to Participation: An Insider's View of Liturgical Renewal* (Washington, DC, 1988: The Pastoral Press): Botte was largely responsible for the new rites, and was an enthusiast for "Hippolytus;" but he defended the new rites on the grounds that, in drawing on "Hipppolytus" they were drawing on the same source that underlay both the Coptic and the Syriac ordination rites, and thus could hardly be censured as defective (whether in "form" or "intention" I might add). He also thought that the old Roman episcopal consecration rite was incoherent and impoverished in its view of the episcopate - see Fr. Hunwicke's strong critique of Botte's views in his 21 May 2015 post, "The Roman Church and Holy Order." I fail to see how any of these changes, however deplorable, render the Roman ordination rites defective in the manner for which Rome censures Cranmer's ordination rites.

    10. Yes, but Dr Tighe, one can also produce copious Anglican authors who have written in defense of a continued intention in the Anglican office, would and have said virtually the same thing you are saying in defense of the novus orod. But when one considers the novus ordo in practice, both the ordination rites as well as the office of communion, it certainly seems to smack of the same Protestantism that one can condemn the Anglicans for; when "priest" is replaced by "presider"; when the altar of sacrifice becomes nothing more than a table facing the people like a dinner setting; when vestments are are personal options etc., etc. one can indeed make the same observations on the new liturgy of the Roman Catholic Church and question its validity, and personally, I would most certainly question the Catholic foundation of some of the committees responsible for the novus ordo.

    11. "... one can also produce copious Anglican authors who have written in defense of a continued intention in the Anglican office, would and have said virtually the same thing you are saying in defense of the novus ordo."

      I don't deny this, but (1) these "copious Anglican authors" do not include those, esp. Cranmer, who framed the Anglican Ordinal and whose views about Holy Orders are (a) very clear and (b) wholly compatible with the 1552/59 Ordinal, whereas (2) the Novus Ordo (deplorable as I have already stated I think it is) Pontifical was not framed by a man (Botte) who ever displayed any leanings towards heresy. (Who cannot respect and admire Anglicans such as Andrewes, Laud, Montague, and later Tractarians and Ritualists, as well as the fruits of Anglican Patristic studies, but for all their learning they were never able to effect substantial alterations to the rites with which Cranmer and his mates saddled the Church of England). I have no doubt that ignoramuses and, yes, heretics, made all that they could of these changes, and especially the later giving into "Mass facing the people" (my own particular bete noire) and "communion in the hand," but really to argue back from this to the defective nature of Paul VI's Pontifical does strike me as a dubious case of post hoc ergo propter hoc. (I rec'd today, by the way, my copy of the English translation of Louis Bouyer's *Memoirs* - of which I already have and have read the French original - and am pleased to say that the translation is very good and that the copious endnotes of the original have not only been translated and transposed into footnotes, but amplified in the English translation.)

    12. Dr Tighe, for me it is impossible to consider anyone who would take one of the most ancient of all Apostolic traditions (the Roman) and destroy it in a weekend as anything other than a Protestant of the most destructive type, or worse. Of course, if the only marks of catholicity today is loyalty to the office of the Pope, then they can be considered "catholics." But for me, this is a defective mark of catholicity.

    13. I've similarly criticized that kind of low-church Catholicism, even from conservatives (you heard it a lot in the '80s if you wanted to be traditional; the John Paul II fans pushed me to become charismatic instead): give up that artsy old-fashioned stuff; all that matters is being under the Pope. It's setting up a false opposition.

      But if the Roman Rite really has been graceless for 1,000 years why care if it was destroyed in a weekend? I know you're not anti-Western, which is why you're now a kind of Anglican. Me: non-papal Western Catholicism is an illusion. The reality of the Anglican Communion and the Old Catholics isn't at all what 19th-century high churchmen imagined. They thought the non-papalists would hold the conservative, patristic, old-fashioned liturgical line in the West while the Pope did something completely out of line like ordain women or marry two men.

      From Diane, a born Catholic who returned:

      It has been said that the West can accommodate the East better than the East can accommodate the West. In my experience, this is abundantly true. Personally, I know no Catholic who doesn't love icons or who feels weirdly out of place during the sanctuary tour at the local Greek Festival. We are open to all that stuff, the icons and iconostases and Pantocrators, the Jesus Prayer, the mysticism. We love it all. We just don't happen to believe that it's all there is – or that everything else is wrong. (Me: Not that the Greek Catholics are perfect, but we actually HAVE all that stuff. We include the East. The East shuts us out.)

      Jesus, I want it all. I could never join a communion that would force me to reject my statues and Holy Cards and Rosaries and stained glass and Benediction hymns and Renaissance Madonnas. You would have to pry that Rosary out of my cold, dead hands. Or drag me away from that statue of Our Lady of Lourdes. In the immortal words of the old Gershwin song, “No, no, you can't take that away from me.”

      Jesus, I want it all.

      And that is why I am Catholic.

      The Pope is only part of that; he's not the only thing that matters.

      Even if you don't like the new Roman Rite (I don't and I'm inclined to agree with Klaus Gamber it's really a different rite from the Roman), our doctrine is irreformable (infallible) so there's no question of changed, heretical intent in its ordinal. Not so Anglicanism. When the framers' heresy got into the first Anglican ordinal, that was it. The Articles make the heresy clear, just as our doctrine makes our intent clear. The link of succession was broken. Adding Catholic-sounding stuff to later Anglican ordinals didn't do the trick. Anglicans are Reformed with (invalid) bishops, not non-papal Western Catholics.

    14. John, simply because one says that the new rite is not heretical and still Catholic does not make it so. Many Anglicans use the same arguments in support of some of the changes made in 1552 and 1662, but they are wrong, and at least, until they fell under the spell of Vatican II, were doing their best to re-catholicise the BCP. One does not see this happening in the Roman Catholic Church where the vast majority think that the novus ordo is a Catholic rite, it is not. The best they can do is a slightly better translation and introduce some tat from the old rite. My contention is that anyone who felt that there was something so incredible wrong with the old Roman rite that it had to be completely destroyed, which is what happened in Vatican II, are simply not Catholics. If they had been truly Catholic the theological reality of the old rite would have been obvious to them and the most they would have done would have been to translate the ancient rite into modern languages, as have done the Orthodox. They did not, they invented a new rite, for a new theology and a new church. To say that the new rite represents the same theology as the old Roman rite is simply ludicrous.

    15. Oh, by the way, when did I ever insinuate that the old Roman rite is graceless? Just the opposite. Its complete destruction, now that was graceless...

    16. I know you didn't; it's just that the attack on the Catholic Church reminded me of the Orthodox we both don't like.

  2. Fr. Hunwicke has written extensively on the "Dutch touch" - indeed, I believe he coined the term!

    See this nice series from 2010:

    1. ...indeed, I believe he coined the term!

      I thought so.

    2. No the "Dutch touch" term has been around for quite some time (ever since Anglicans and Dutch Old Catholics formed a union and co-celebrated episcopal consecrations), far older than Fr Hunwicke.


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