Friday, April 26, 2013

The Ordinariate Grows

The Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of the Southern Cross – not yet a year old, having been established on the feast of the Sacred Heart in 2012 – continues to grow, quietly and steadily; to-day, its thirteenth priest will be ordained: Fr Gordon Barnier.

Some time ago, another priest of the Ordinariate gave an interview in Kairos, the Melbourne Archdiocesan magazine, indicating that there were fifteen in formation, so we trust that in due course a few more men will be ordained for priestly service in full communion with the Catholic Church. 

In a similar way, groups of Anglicans have been admitted into that full communion – most recently, several members of the St Patrick's Ordinariate Group (centred on Benalla, in north-east Victoria), in early April.  The members of these groups are often widely-spread, but now, rather than being on the fringes of Anglicanism, mainstream or "continuing", they are full members both of the Catholic Church worldwide, and in a special way of the local Ordinariate.

Of your charity, please pray for the following priests of the Australian Ordinariate, especially on the anniversaries of their ordination as Catholic priests:
Western Australia (2):
Very Rev Mgr Harry Entwistle, Ordinary (ord. 15/6/12)
Fr Stephen Hill (ord. 1/3/13) 
Victoria (4):
Fr Christopher Seton (ord. 8/9/12)
Fr Neil Fryer (ord. 8/9/12)
Fr James Grant (ord. 8/9/12)
Fr Ramsay Williams (ord. 8/9/12) 
NSW (1):
Fr Warren Wade (ord. 12/12/12) 
Queensland (6):
Fr Antony (Tony) Iball (ord. 18/10/12)
Fr Lyall Cowell (ord. 18/10/12)
Fr Andrew Kinmont (ord. 5/4/13)
Fr Gordon Barnier (ord. 26/4/13)
Fr Owen Buckton (ord. 1/2/13)
Fr Ron(ald) Wallis (ord. 5/4/13)
Please pray, too, for the Ordinariate, and those considering entering full communion in it, that it may welcome many souls heeding the call to unity, and thus bear fruit for the wider Church:

Our Lady of the Southern Cross, pray for them.


Unknown said...

But you're only telling us about the priests who are joining up. Surely that's not the most important part of the story, Joshua. We were told they would be bringing a lot of lay people with them, and one had his picture in the national press to announce how his whole parish would be joining up.

Growth would equal more clergy if that growth is built on large numbers of people converting specifically to find their spiritual home in the Ordinariate. At the moment we seem to be seeing a lot of clergy ordained without correlative growth among the lay people.

Restricting these observations to the Melbourne Ordinariate, I understand there has been significant attrition of people back to their original parishes from the Ordinariate. What do you know of the story with the not-ordained people in the Ordinariate?

Without a critical mass of laity who take their financial obligations seriously, the Australian Ordinariate is going to need bailing out sooner rather than later. To the best of my (first- and second-hand) knowledge, attendances in Melbourne have been on the leaner side of healthy rather than the overwhelming flood we were lead to expect. This is not to accuse anyone of anything untoward, unless you consider over-optimism to be some sort of punishable offense.

Does anyone know how many of the mainstream Anglicans (ie: not from TAC or other splinter groups, from the actual Anglican Church of Australia, whence came all the Melbourne-based clergy of the Ordinariate) came over initially, and how many of those have gone back to being real Anglicans?

Joshua said...

Sorry, Bernadette, I have no information about your questions, reasonable as they are - amassing even this list of ordained clergy took a lot of effort.

There is a well-known effect whereby clergy are more likely to convert than laity.

I know nothing of the attendance at the Melbourne Ordinariate other than the hearsay that numbers are small (but they were that to start with - I was at their first Sunday Mass). I do hope those who have come into full communion haven't given up and gone back to Egypt.

In any case, do pray for the Ordinariate, for its priest and for its laity - as Newman said, the Church would look pretty funny without the latter.

gw said...

Bernadette : I did not hear of large floods of people. compared to other catholic congregations we are going to be small for a while at least. Like Joshua I hope none have gone back to Egypt.
I can say that we had 31 laity with about 10 more to come. Including teenage confirmees, young children were not counted.
"Real Anglicans" - a curious expression.

Joshua said...

Yes, gw, I did find Bernadette's use of the phrase "real Anglicans" to be a bit tendentious...

God grant that the Ordinariate will grow and flourish, even if it is the Benjamin of the family.