Things are not looking good for the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham says Damian Thompson, unless it embraces our Divine Worship. Former Anglo-Catholics from England and Wales had shown their loyalty to Rome by celebrating the Novus Ordo long before they came into the Catholic Church. Sadly, many do not bother with our new missal and Thompson says that is a problem for the survival of the Ordinariate.
He has some suggestions on how to save it that we in North America should also take to heart.
Having noisily championed the Ordinariate from day one, I wasn’t keen to hear – yet again – its own faithful tell me that, well, it was a nice idea, but everyone hates us and even some of our own priests aren’t really on board.
Sure enough, that is exactly what I’ve been told and I’m now convinced that the Ordinariate in its present form will wither away.
But note the qualification: in its present form. Those 80 priests include visionaries who believe that the Ordinariate can reinvent itself.
By that, they mean that the fantasy of group conversions needs to be ditched. Also, Ordinariate priests and laity who never liked their unique Missal, Divine Worship, should slip quietly into the Catholic mainstream.
Only then will a smaller Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham enrich the whole Church with the radiant Divine Worship, revive moribund parishes and evangelise with the vigour of its Anglo-Catholic forebears. That sounds like wishful thinking – but the people who believe in it make a stronger practical case for this Ordinariate Mark II than anyone ever did for the launch model.
Here in Ottawa, even before we came into the Catholic Church, I would wonder why we didn’t have people lining up around the corner to squeeze into our Sunday services.
What beauty! What reverence! What preaching! What community! And now that we’re Catholic, the fulness of the faith and obedience to Christ’s call to unity.
Last Sunday, a family of evangelicals came to visit. We have a preacher in Fr. Doug Hayman who ranks with any evangelical preacher I have ever heard for meaty, profound sermons spoken not read but conveying a prodigious knowledge of Scripture.
We have to watch the Eeyore’s and Chicken Littles in our midst who sow discouragement and frustration and keep the vision. It’s this that will attract.