By Anthony Barich
AN Ordinariate for Anglicans to enter the Catholic Church is set to be established in Australia by Pentecost this year, and will include Japan.
The Ordinariate – which is effectively a diocese without geographical boundaries - is in response to Pope Benedict XVI’s November 2009 Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum coetibus (“On the gathering of the Anglicans”).
The Constitution gave Anglicans a way to celebrate their heritage of worship and life as communities within the full communion of the Catholic Church.
While the emphasis of Anglicanorum coetibus is for Anglicans to enter the Catholic Church in groups, 28 Anglican priests in Australia have so far expressed their firm intention to take up Pope Benedict’s offer.
The Traditional Anglican Communion, a group of disaffected Anglicans who have been seeking full communion with Rome for years, will host a festival in Perth on 26 February at Holy Family Catholic Church in Como for the Anglican Ordinariate for Australia.
TAC Bishop Harry Entwistle - one of four TAC Bishops in Australia and the Torres Strait Islands who will be ordained as Catholic priests, likely just before the Ordinariate is officially established, told The Record the festival is a public statement that “this is no longer just a theory, it’s really happening”. “It’s an opportunity to gather those who are more than just casually interested,” he said of the festival, which is for Catholics and Anglicans who, like the TAC, have long been disillusioned with the Anglican Church’s liberalisation with female clergy, among other things.
Melbourne Auxiliary Bishop Peter Elliott, Delegate for the Holy See for the Australian Ordinariate, will address the festival, as will Adelaide-based Archbishop John Hepworth, Primate of the TAC which claims a global membership of 400,000.
Peter Gannon will also address the festival on what benefit the Ordinariate has for ‘cradle Catholics’, while Robert Andrew, a member of the Friends of Anglican Catholics support group who also converted from the Anglican Church, will also talk on what attraction it holds for people like him...