Do you remember where you were when you first heard Pope Benedict XVI would be publishing an Apostolic Constitution allowing for the creation of Ordinariates for Anglicans wishing to become Catholic and at the same time allowing them to preserve aspects of their patrimony?
I was at the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB) annual plenary. The picture above is from last year, as I no longer have pictures from 2009.
How did you feel? Were you shocked? Exhilarated? Disbelieving? Overcome with gratitude and thanksgiving? Wary? Concerned about your future? Where were you when you heard? What did you do? Who did you talk to?
It’s hard to believe it is now almost exactly ten years since that day. We have so much to be thankful for. It’s pretty amazing when you look at how far we have come!
Though Anglicanorum coetibus was published on Nov. 4, 2009, the world first heard about it on Oct. 20. Remember the headlines about how Pope Benedict was parking tanks on the lawn of of the Archbishop of Canterbury--something to that effect?
When I heard the news, I was in Cornwall, Ontario, at the sprawling NAV Centre, covering the CCCB plenary that began on Oct. 19 that year.
I returned to my room on Monday evening after 11:30 pm to discover several emails from journalist friends in Rome, telling me of breaking news of an historic development regarding Anglicans and the Catholic Church. They asked if this had anything to do with the Traditional Anglican Communion to which I belonged at the time. Yes! It concerned not only the TAC, which had written a petition to Rome in 2007, but also other Anglican groups that had made persistent requests to Rome.
When, I went down to breakfast I felt so elated I thought my head would explode. Some bishops clearly shared by joy and congratulated me. Others were not so sure this was a good development. The primate of the Anglican Church of Canada was present as an observer at the plenary and he seemed nonplussed by the announcement.
Oh what happy days those were! So much has happened since that has been a source of great joy: we have been received into the Catholic Church; our clergy have been ordained Catholic priests; we have Divine Worship: the Missal that is pretty much everything we hoped to retain of Anglican patrimony in a Catholic Mass.
What are you thankful for?
How are you going to celebrate?