Anglicans respect decisions made in good conscience
Contrary to Fr Christopher Seton’s reported comments (“New world order as Anglican priests move to a Catholic environment”, The Age, 8/8), the Anglican Church respects those who cannot accept, in good conscience, the ordination of women to the priesthood and the episcopate.
Even though the ordination of women has been joyfully embraced by the Melbourne Diocese and a majority of the Australian Dioceses, the Anglican Church has sought to be supportive of those who cannot accept the ordained ministry of women priests or bishops.
A protocol to ensure appropriate care and support for those who object to women’s ordination is well established.
Moreover, Fr Seton’s reported assertion “that you’ve got to believe in same-sex marriage” to remain in the Anglican Church is inaccurate and misplaced.
A new priest will be appointed to Fr Seton’s former Anglican parish of All Saints Kooyong and the parish will continue as a worshipping community in the Anglican tradition.
We wish the four priests who have chosen to enter the Ordinariate every blessing for their future ministry. We have a good relationship with the Roman Catholic Church in Melbourne, and hope to maintain this by avoiding the kind of commentary reported in this article.
Anglican Diocese of Melbourne
Tag Archives: Fr Christopher Seton
What a strange headline… although I suppose it is The Age (au):
Christopher Seton leaves one job on September 2 and starts another six days later. In one sense it is exactly the same job, and in another it is completely different. Father Seton is one of four Anglican priests who will be ordained into the Catholic Church in Melbourne on September 8.
Father Seton holds his last service at All Saints Kooyong on September 2. Then he and – so far as he is aware – his entire congregation will regather a week later at the Holy Cross Catholic Church in Caulfield South. There he will minister to the same people (and, doubtless, some new ones), using the same liturgy and singing the same hymns. But now they will be on the opposite side of a once-bitter sectarian divide.
”In a sense, we are just moving office,” Father Seton said yesterday. But he, along with Fathers James Grant, Ramsay Williams and Neil Fryer, will now be priests in the Ordinariate of Our Lady of the Southern Cross, the Catholic Church’s new Anglican wing set up by Pope Benedict for those who felt disenfranchised by the ordination of women and other developments in the Anglican Church.
Clergy in the ordinariate may be married, as is the Ordinary (the head), Harry Entwistle, who was a bishop in the breakaway Traditional Anglican Communion, but a married priest cannot be a bishop.
The ordinariate began with Father Entwistle’s ordination on June 15, and the creation of a 60-strong parish in Perth.
Father Seton believes it is ”a safe place” for Anglicans with Catholic inclinations.
”So many of us have tried to find a space within established Anglicanism, but there’s really no space for us any more. If you don’t embrace the new religion they don’t want you. You’ve got to believe in same-sex marriage and women priests, things that we just can’t embrace.”
He says traditional Anglo-Catholics have been portrayed unfairly as misogynists, and treated by some liberals as ”a bit of a joke”.
”But we are taking our patrimony with us – the Anglican way of doing things and the spirituality and the theology.
”We will be pretty much what we always were.”