The Anglican Patrimony is for all English-speaking Catholics–Shane Schaetzel

Shane Schaetzel, a former director on the board of the Anglicanorum Coetibus Society, apologist, blogger and member of the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter community in Republic, Missouri, believes Anglican Patrimony is the heritage of all English-speaking Catholics, not just those who are former Anglicans and members of the Ordinariates.

For Shane, our patrimony is a key to revival and renewal of the Catholic faith in the Anglosphere.   He has post up at his Complete Christianity blog that lays out key steps anyone can take to incorporate this patrimony in their lives to deepen their conversion and better evangelize.

He writes: 

To be clear, when we say “Anglican Patrimony” we are not talking about Anglicanism. Rather, we are talking about the English spiritual heritage that was originally Catholic, but continued after the English Reformation under Anglicanism for five centuries, before it was reunited with Rome in 1980 under Pope Saint John Paul II’s “Anglican Use Pastoral Provision” and then expanded under Pope Benedict XVI’s Apostolic Constitution entitled Anglicanorum Coetibus (Latin: Groups of Anglicans). Today, this Anglican Patrimony, now fully readopted back into the Catholic Church, is manifested in three personal ordinariates around the world, a fully developed Missal and Office, along with an accompanying spirituality that is deep in English heritage. Any Catholic may be enriched by this, especially English-speaking Catholics, and it was Pope Benedict XVI’s expressed will that the Anglican Patrimony be returned to the Catholic Church as a spiritual gift for all Catholics.

Many of my readers have expressed to me a desire to return to the traditional Catholic spirituality of the Anglican Patrimony. I have provided below everything one needs to accomplish a deeper connection to that heritage, regardless if one is eligible for ordinariate membership or not.

Shane offers some suggestions of simple steps for anyone interested in this patrimony to get started.   Go on over and read the whole post!

 

Charles I – Is he a Saint?

Charles Coulombe publishes an article in the Catholic Herald asking this question, and noting its relevance for Catholics of Anglican patrimony.  Here’s an excerpt:

Interesting as all these facts may be to students of English history and Anglican beliefs, what interest could the question of Charles I’s sanctity possibly have for Catholics? Quite a bit, really.

For one thing, his cultus plays a prominent role in that Anglican Patrimony which Pope Benedict XVI created the Personal Ordinariates to preserve within the Catholic Church. When various Eastern Orthodox groups have been reconciled to the Church, they have been allowed to continue to venerate a number of post-1054 figures as Saints. So, might our newly admitted brethren of Anglican background be able to do the same with Charles I?

Go on over and read the rest!

Cardinal Newman’s perspective on how to deal with crises in the Catholic Church

There’s lots of talk Blessed Cardinal John Henry Newman could be canonized this year, perhaps in October, as a second miracle has been verified.  For those of us Catholics of Anglican tradition, this is wonderful news.  He is a hero and example to us.

Meanwhile, Cardinal Newman has been used by the Catholic progressivist left to justify all manner of development of doctrine; and by traditionalists to argue Cardinal Newman would be aghast by what some are passing off as genuine development.

But Fr. John Hunwicke, a priest of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham, has unearthed a quote from Cardinal Newman that seems quite helpful for those of us looking for a way to respond to the current state of play in the Church.

Fr. Hunwicke started off by mentioning Cardinal Mueller’s Manifesto that I refer to in a previous blog post.  He notes that the former Prefect of the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith does not mention the Papacy in his document. (Fr Hunwicke’s emphases.)

This is unusual in modern Catholic discourse. The sickly mawkish modern cult of the Bishop of Rome has for so long pushed the Witness of the Incarnate Word, the words of Scripture, the teaching of the Fathers, into the background. How often have you heard a semi-literate sermon in which “Pope Francis Says” is prominent, but never any hint is given of “Jesus Says”? So, if the Manifesto had no other value, that particular silence would be as refreshing as a glass of cold water on a sticky day.

But why?

Possibly the Cardinal agrees with the great Anglican theologian Eric Mascall that the doctrine of Papal Infallibility does not so much tell us something about the Christian Faith, as about the circumstances in which we might be told something about that Faith.

But I am convinced that, consciously or unconsciously, Gerhard Mueller has in mind the teaching of Blessed John Henry Newman about the situation during the Arian crisis:

“… the body of the episcopate was unfaithful to its commission  … at one time the pope*, at other times a patriarchal, metropolitan, or other great see, at other times general councils*, said what they should not have said, or did what obscured and compromised revealed truth … I say, that there was a temporary suspense of the functions of the Ecclesia docens. The body of bishops failed in their confession of the faith. They spoke variously, one against another; there was nothing, after Nicaea, of firm, unvarying, consistent testimony, for nearly sixty years …”

It seems to me that the moment when PF decided not to answer the Dubia of the four Cardinals was the formal, official moment … the starting gun … when the Petrine Ministry entered into its current “temporary suspense”. When, likewise, he ignored the Filial Correction which some of us had sent him, he confirmed that Suspense. Thus we are officially in a period in which the functions of the Papal Magisterium are in a vacatio which will be ended at the moment when the same Petrine Magisterial organ as formally returns from dogmatic silence to the audible exercise of the functions rightly attributed to it in Catholic Tradition and Magisterial Conciliar definition; that is, “devoutly to guard and faithfully to set forth the Tradition received through the Apostles; i.e. the Deposit of Faith”.

I found this post of Fr. Hunwicke’s and the quote from Cardinal Newman most interesting in light of the present state of confusion in the Church that is tempting people in all sorts of weird and potentially dangerous directions, both right and left.

On one hand, there are those who find the only solution is to say the See of Peter is vacant, or that Pope Benedict XVI didn’t resign properly so he must be the true pope.  On the other, you have those who say anything Pope Francis says is from the Holy Spirit and our obedience as Catholics demands we assent to papal positivism no matter whether what he says contradicts the teachings of Scripture and the magisterium of previous popes.

This view of “temporary suspense” seems to me the most viable position right now.

 

O LORD, we beseech thee to keep thy Church and household continually in thy true religion. . . .

The Collect from our Divine Worship: The Missal this week is as follows:

O LORD, we beseech thee to keep thy Church and household continually in thy true religion: that they who do lean only upon the hope of thy heavenly grace, may evermore be defended by thy mighty power; through Jesus Christ thy Son our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, ever one God, world without end. Amen.

True religion.  True religion is found in the Catholic Church.  This for many of us was the Pearl of Great Price that was gained through much sacrifice and suffering.

This Collect seems a propos after the controversy following a document Pope Francis signed in the United Arab Emirates on Human Fraternity that said:

The pluralism and the diversity of religions, colour, sex, race and language are willed by God in His wisdom, through which He created human beings.

Continue reading

Anglican choral music brings Catholics together for Candlemas

People from across the Catholic community in Ottawa (including the Nuncio!) came together a few nights ago to celebrate a choral High Mass in the Anglican Use, the first time this particular feast day has been celebrated with full choral music by ordinariate Catholics in the city. (The first write-up from the evening can be found here: Anglican tradition Candlemas with the Papal Nuncio.)

img_9726The Feast of the Presentation of our Lord in the Temple is the close of the opening portion of the Church’s liturgical year and the end of the Christmas season, and as such it is an incredibly rich occasion liturgically, didactically, prophetically, Biblically, and in its imagery. As our Lord himself submits to the law of Temple worship, so we Christians follow his example in praying the mass.

img_9630For this particular mass, the setting was Harold Darke’s Communion Service in E, commonly known as ‘Darke in E’. While a popular setting amongst Anglicans, many Catholics have never heard it, and many ordinariate congregations don’t yet have the musical resources to do such choral settings on a regular basis.

There were multiple motets, including Eccard’s When to the Temple Mary Went, Poston’s Jesus Christ the Apple Tree, and Byrd’s polyphonic alleluia proper, Alleluia Senex Puerum, from his great Gradualia.

img_7265Other propers, and chanted antiphons for the Candlemas rite at the beginning of mass, were done according to Healey Willan’s settings of the English chants in Gregorian plainsong, and the psalm was sung in Anglican chant as well.

The canticle Nunc Dimittis was sung from Stanford in C, which was a particularly poignant dose of patrimony for many of us.

img_9754There were also of course numerous classic Anglican hymns, including Of the Father’s Love Begotten, Sing We of the Blessed Mother, and At the Name of Jesus. The organist for the occasion was Matthew Larkin, and the splendid music was complemented by moments of profound silence and a great sense of peace and joy throughout the service.

Afterwards, many expressed how beautiful they found the liturgy and one Latin rite Catholic who normally isn’t able to attend mass with such sacred music commented “Everything I heard was beautiful… I get it. I so get it. It is uplifting and appropriate for the splendour of what is happening in a way that complements but does not distract. Bad music or beautiful music badly executed are both distracting. If this was my norm, wow…”

For us Anglican Catholics in the ordinariate, it is so important to not take our Anglican tradition for granted, but to cherish it and make full use of it in order for it to really assume, and grow into, its full potential in the Catholic Church.


The Anglican tradition, as Pope Benedict XVI so insightfully recognized, has immense potential to glorify God and evangelize souls. Its beauty reveals what Catholic worship really is and attracts people to the unity of the one universal Church.

It was a real blessing to have the Papal Nuncio with us, as well as numerous university students, CCO missionaries, and sisters from the Queenship of Mary, all of whom stayed for fellowship afterwards in the parish hall and many of whom came later to the pub too.

As we celebrate the Lord’s presentation in the ancient Temple of Jerusalem, it is only fitting that we present ourselves, our souls and bodies, as well as our worthy Anglican patrimony, before the Lord in his holy worship.

[Below are three clips from the evening: the Psalm in Anglican chant from the Canadian Psalter; the Introit in English plainsong; and the Communion motet, Poston’s Jesus Christ the Apple Tree]

Psalm 24 in Anglican chant, being sung through by some of the singers before the service. The chant is by J. Barnby and is taken from the Canadian Psalter. “…Who is the King of glory? even the Lord of hosts, he is the King of glory.” :

The Introit was sung in English plainsong in a setting pointed by Healey Willan. Anglicans have sung Gregorian plainsong in English for generations, and this is most definitely a treasure we can share with the wider Latin Church. Suscepimus (Ps 48 :8,9,1): “We have waited O God for thy loving-kindness in the midst of thy temple; according to thy Name, O God, so is thy praise also unto the world’s end; Thy right hand is full of righteousness. Great is the Lord, and highly to be praised: In the city of our God, even upon his holy hill. Glory be… We have waited…” :


The Communion motet was the beautiful setting by Elizabeth Poston (1905-1987) of Jesus Christ the Apple Tree (18th century):

“It was revealed unto Simeon by the Holy Spirit that he should not see death until he had seen the Lord’s Anointed” -Communion Proper for Candlemas, DWM

 

All Saints Sisters of the Poor on Anglican Patrimony

The All Saints Sisters of the Poor, a Catholic community of former Anglican religious, have a wonderful description of Anglican patrimony on their website.

What is this treasure, this ‘Anglican Patrimony’?

The mist on an English moor is elusive and impossible to describe in words, unless perhaps by poetry.  Nevertheless it is quite real.  The heritage of the Anglican or English spiritual way is equally elusive of definition.  It almost needs to be experienced to grasp what it means.  Nevertheless, like the English mist, it is quite real.  No one has all the pieces of this mist, yet here are some brief thoughts with gratitude to others who have pondered this issue.

The Anglican treasure is :

First:  PEOPLE

Consider a list of a few of the more famous converts:

St Edmund Campion (yes, he was a convert)
Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman
Gerald Manley Hopkins, S.J.
G.K. Chesterton
Ronald Knox

And a host of others who became faithful priests, bishops, religious and lay people in the Catholic Church – and most lately, the All Saints Sisters!

Perhaps the most mysterious gift of this Anglican patrimony is its way of graciously leading souls onward – with the kindly light of Christ – leading, in fact, into full communion and union with the Holy See.

Second:  HEAVEN IN ORDINARY

The Anglican treasure presents a beautiful synthesis of prayer and life.  It has preserved a sense of the holy within the ordinary, all encircled and encompassed with God’s loving, Trinitarian Presence.  Here is a quality of down-to-earthness, a “homeliness” (Julian of Norwich’s term), a warm, tolerant and human devotion rooted in love reaching up to heaven.

Third:  HERITAGE OF COMMON PRAYER

This part of the spiritual heritage of Anglican converts yet it is symbolized by the old Book of Common Prayer and particularly difficult to explain.  The Roman Catholic Church has nothing like it.  Nothing.  Born in 1549 of the horrible, bloody rupture known as the English Reformation, this one book soon became the corner stone of the English spiritual way.

It preserved a deep reverence for the Holy Eucharist, a central place for the Divine Office as corporate worship for the entire church which gave birth to a delicate sense of prayer, of the heart in pilgrimage, “Church bells beyond the stars heard, the soul’s blood….something understood.”  (George Herbert, Prayer I)

Fourth:   A MONASTIC QUALITY

“You are here to kneel/ Where prayer has been valid.”  ….

“Here, the intersection of the timeless moment”  ….

“So, while the light fails/ On a winter’s afternoon, in a secluded chapel/ History is now and England.”      (T.S. Eliot, all from ‘Little Gidding’)

In the Middle Ages, England was called “the land of the Benedictines”.

There is in the English patrimony, a spiritual continuity between the desert fathers and mothers, the monastic led Celtic Church, St. Benedict and his sons: including St. Augustine of Canterbury, St. Anselm, St. Aelred the Cistercian, on through the 14th Century English mystics,  the Caroline Divines, the Tractarian priests, Blessed John Henry Newman…..and many holy monastic men and women from c.1850 to 2012.

This monastic quality is revealed in at least three ways:

Stability…not as a vow, but as “in a settled church.” (John Donne)  This is also the English tendency towards ‘balance‘ which is a monastic quality. This is “A serious house on serious earth…” of Philip Larkin’s Church Going

Recollection…As in the Rule of St Benedict (RB) there is an emphasis on ‘conversion of life’ so in the Anglican patrimony there is this emphasis on habitual living in Christ’s Presence in the Church and a meditative approach to life.  As the 14th century English Mystic, Julian of Norwich, put it:

    ‘The fruit and the purpose of prayer
is to be oned with
and like God in all things.’

The Divine Office…Anglicans have long been a people of the Divine Office in which all were expected to participate.  Generations of Anglicans grew up going to church on Sundays (and sometimes on weekdays) to chant the Psalms at Morning Prayer – and often Evensong as well.  The Book of Common Prayer (BCP) preserved the monastic quality of the Hours and made it an integrated system of gathering for community prayer.