I am hoping that with these remarks we are seeing a new +Kasper the Friendly Cardinal…
That is to say, friendly to those parties looking to unite in communion and love to the Holy See.
As it stands right now, he and his ilk have been instrumental in discouraging or disparaging talk of accomadation for groups like the Traditional Anglican Communin (TAC) which are outside of the mainstream Anglican communion and wish to be united to Rome. Also the Russian Greek Catholics (Russian Orthodox who have pledged their allegiance to Rome, sometimes by demanding Rome accept their allegiance!) have been denied a bishop of their own, and priests have been turned away and discouraged from unia left and right. We don’t – or so the thinking goes – want to alienate the churches and ecclesial communities from whence these groups hail.
Why? If we upset them, what would it matter? What outcome would it effect?
Most especially with the Anglican Communion, “that ship has sailed” and even if Anglican/Catholic raproachment HAD been possible a few decades ago, it no longer is. Consecrating or not consecrating women bishops or affirming homosexuality as legit is merely the icing on the cake.
“Leave the rest, take the best” comes to mind. There is no reason to leave the groups clamoring for unia out in the cold so as not to anger, upset or annoy non-Catholic communities that are increasingly disinterested in sharing our faith and making that obvious in word and in deed.
It is my hope that the reception of Mar Bawai Soro – a bishop bringing into union with Rome his priests, deacons and faithful out of the Church of the East – is the begining of a new chapter.
Such bold moves have been unfamiliar to Rome in the last few decades, but I believe it is time to return. It is time to quit worrying about whether the Orthodox will be upset with us, or what damage will be done to our talks with the Anglicans if we take members of their church who want to leave them and join us. They have done such unilateral damage on their own, it is absolutely impossible for me to imagine that by taking small groups on board to the Barque of Peter we would do more damage than they have done to themselves!
Honestly, looking at the TEC and the wider Anglican communion… I am growing more and more convinced that both parties would be rather relieved and happy if Rome were to take off of their hands the conservative/orthodox/traditionalist factions of the Anglican Communion. With them gone they can get on to the business of ordaining more women, ordaining more practicing and promoting homosexuals, focusing on the Millenium Developmeng Goals, ridding the BCP of “sexist” language and patriarchy.
The “reformers” and “reassesors” of the Anglican Communion and TEC in particular have had to deal with these sub-groups who – like an untrained puppy – pee all over their ideas and waiste their time and efforts in implementing their snazzy new “progressive” ideas.
Most of them would be more than happy to give that puppy to a new home. Then again, the palpable anti-Catholic sentiment of many is such that they would cut off their own noses to spite their faces. Many would rather those folks did not exist at all, than to know that they are still out there and re-aligned with the significantly larger and more powerful Roman See.
Time will tell, but I for one hope that the days of Catholic’s coddling Anglicans who unilaterally innovate are over. More plainly, there is NO hope now of any re-union (if there ever was) let’s quit pretending like there is anything that we could do to damage what can never really happen.
To do so any longer is sillier than me refusing to make plans for June 3d on the off chance I might be busy getting crowned “king of the world”.