Monday 28 December 2009

Traditional Anglican Communion will strengthen Catholic pro-life witness

Whilst in Australia for our son's graduation at Campion College, I had the pleasure of speaking with Archbishop John Hepworth (pictured right), the primate of the Traditional Anglican Communion, and bishop ordinary in the Anglican Church of Australia.

I have no doubt that part of the impact of Pope Benedict's Apostolic Constitution for “former Anglicans to enter into the fullness of communion with the Catholic Church” will be greatly to strengthen Catholic witness on pro-life matters.

In a post today on The Anglo-Catholic, we can find a message from His Grace Archbishop Hepworth for Holy Innocents Day which bodes well for the Catholic Church. It includes the following:
" ... Our bishops have realised from the start of our separation from the Anglican Communion that it was a separation of pilgrimage.  Pilgrimage must have a goal.  Our goal was the healing of catholic disunity, that Anglicans had sought and then abandoned.

"There is great integrity in being a pilgrim.  If the destination be holy, God sustains on the journey.  We will not be rushed or stampeded.  Nor will we falter.  So in our waiting as the vision of our destination becomes clearer in the mists of our wandering, let us take clear sight of the martyrs who are our Octave companions.  Their echoes are all around us, in the destruction of innocent life, in the failure of episcopal teaching, in the denial of the Christ Child’s godliness, in the transformation of love into hate, even within the company of those who bear His Name ... "
Please forgive my self-indulgence in highlighting the text above. As we prepare early in the new year to face "government legislation which threatens both children and families as never before in our country" in the Children Schools and Families Bill, the Catholic church in England and Wales urgently needs the kind of strong witness we see in the Archbishop's words, delivered with a welcome Aussie bluntness.

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