2011 ~ Anglican-Roman Catholic news & opinion
Roman Catholics and leaders of the 16 Commonwealth countries where Queen Elizabeth II serves as head of state have welcomed an announcement by U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron about changes to the royal succession that include allowing the monarch to marry a Roman Catholic.
“Attitudes have changed fundamentally over the centuries and some of the outdated rules … just don’t make sense to any of us any more,” Cameron told reporters on Oct. 28 at the 2011 Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting in Perth, Australia.
Anglicans from the diocese of Qu’Appelle and Roman Catholics from the archdiocese of Regina celebrated Pentecost Sunday together at Holy Rosary Cathedral in Regina. The joint service was the result of the covenant between the two dioceses, signed in January 2011. The two dioceses occupy roughly the same geographic area in southern Saskatchewan.
The covenant was signed by Anglican Bishop Gregory Kerr-Wilson and Roman Catholic Archbishop Daniel Bohan. The agreement commits the dioceses to specific initiatives. These include annual shared services with the two bishops, keeping and upholding each church and its leaders in prayer, working together on various issues, and jointly working with First Nations elders to promote reconciliation and healing. The bishops commit to maintaining communications, especially when new developments in one church may present challenges for the other. Anglican and Roman Catholic parishes are encouraged to undertake joint activities in worship, mission, education and social justice.
The third phase of ARCIC, or Anglican-Roman Catholic International Commission, started on Tuesday at the monastery of Bose in northern Italy. Nestled in the foothills of the Alps, the monastery, founded on the closing day of the Second Vatican Council in December 1965, is a haven of peaceful reflection and prayer, but also a place of important ecumenical encounters.
Within its secluded walls, the two teams of Catholic and Anglican experts are gathered from May 17th to 27th focusing on the theme ‘Church as Communion — local and universal.’ The discussions will look back at achievements of the previous ARCIC dialogues and explore pressing ethical issues that are challenging the teaching of both Churches.
The Anglican Roman Catholic International Commission is spending its first few days reviewing the work of the previous phases of work, particularly looking at what ARCIC I and II said about ecclesiology and ethics. It is doing this within a context of regular community prayer with the members of the Monastery of Bose. Biblical study of the Epistle to the Ephesians, led by the co-chairs, provides a biblical framework for the days’ discussions.
Archbishop Bernard Longley the Co-Chairman of ARCIC III shares his thoughts and hopes for this important new ecumenical dialogue during an exclusive interview with Peter Jennings, his Press Secretary. The Archbishop of Birmingham travels to Bose, a monastery in northern Italy, today, Tuesday 17 May 2011, for the first meeting of ARCIC III.
What is ARCIC III and why was it set-up?
ARCIC III is the third phase of the international dialogue between the Anglican Communion and the Catholic Church. It originally began in response to the Second Vatican Council and as a result of the visit of the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Michael Ramsey, to Pope Paul VI in 1966. Archbishop Ramsey and Pope Paul issued a joint statement at that time speaking of “a new stage in the development of fraternal relations” and this vision has been a characteristic of the ARCIC dialogue every since. ARCIC III takes as its mandate the meeting between Pope Benedict XVI and Archbishop Rowan Williams in 2006 when they committed our two communions to continue the dialogue.
Last month, the national Canadian ARC Bishops’ Dialogue celebrated 40 years of bringing Anglican and Roman Catholics closer together. “The Canadian Anglican-Roman Catholic dialogue is one of the longest running in the world,” says Bishop Michael Ingham of the Anglican diocese of New Westminster in Vancouver.
Unity headed the agenda as five Roman Catholic and four Anglican bishops (one was absent due to illness) met over three days in Pickering, Ont., to discuss–among other things–Growing Together in Unity and Mission, a document produced by the International Anglican-Roman Catholic Commission for Unity and Mission.