Fr. Dwight Longenecker, a prolific blogger and former Anglican clergyman, now a married Catholic priest but not an Ordinariate priest, has an interesting column at Patheos today.
When I was a priest in the Church of England the authorities introduced a delightfully Anglican phrase, “two integrities”. We were all supposed to embrace “two integrities”. So when it came to the issue of women’s ordination for example, we were supposed to “listen carefully and dialogue with those with whom we disagreed.” We were supposed to “accompany them” as they moved from one position to another.
Those who were opposed to women’s ordination were supposed to stand by, observe, welcome and embrace those who were in favor of women’s ordination and those who were in favor of women’s ordination were supposed to be respectful and honor their “weaker brothers and sisters” who had not yet seen the light of the progressive dawn. We were to “walk together in the creative and often difficult tension that comes with disagreement among God’s people.”
He asks if the Catholic Church is also becoming “more Anglican” in its approach to differing perspectives, ongoing dialogue and accompaniment.
Whether the Vatican is becoming increasingly Anglican and wishy washy is a point for debate–my main observation is that this idea of “two integrities” is based on a relativist foundation of sand. Increasingly in Catholic church circles we find the idea that “you have your truth” and “I have my truth” and the important thing is that we not only tolerate one another, but listen and dialogue together.
This attempt to have “two integrities” and to “foster dialogue” is always promoted by the progressives because it springs from and reinforces their relativist philosophy.
In my thirteen years of close observation of the Catholic Church as a journalist, I would say the approach differs from the Anglican one in that there is such a horror of schism and division that holding ideas in tension is a modus vivendi to maintain unity.
In any event, there was always the Pope as a sign of unity, and defender of the deposit of faith. And then, there is always the Magisterium of the Catholic Church that even the Pope is to serve, not make up as he goes along.
The Anglican approach did not forestall the centripetal forces of division regarding the truths of the faith.