At last the establishment of the Australian Anglican Ordinariate has been announced. Earlier this week I was pleased to read in the “Record” that the Pope will announce the establishment of the Ordinariate on June 15 2012. It has been so quiet some of us wondered if it would ever happen. It did hit me as interesting that at a time when all the Catholic structures are collasping and under attack that we are now setting up a new structure. Often the church of the structure has unfortunately seemed distant from the Church of the Spirit so lets pray and hope that this structure will be a holy vessel for the church of the Spirit and truth.
The new ordinary has not been announced yet and I haven’t really seen or heard any hot gossip on who it will be. For myself I think Bishop Peter Elliot would make a great ordinary. Having a Bishop as an ordinary rather than a priest means that the Ordinariate can be more independent of the Roman structure with its very controlling bishops. Jesus said that in his Church one should not exercise authority as the Gentiles do by lording it over people. Unfortunately this command or advice of the Lord has been truly ignored by the hierarchy of the Church throughout most centuries. As a result we have a dysfunctional Church that is limping towards the Kingdom rather than soaring with the freedom of eagle’s wings to the Kingdom to Come.
I was reading about St Patrick’s evangelisation (or reevangelisation of Ireland) where he created 387 Bishops. The Celtic churches also had the Abbot (often lay Abbots) as the leader of the local Christian communities with the Bishops as treasured members of the community rather than the ruling Lord. I once heard Bishop Entwistle of Perth mention this in one of his speeches and I hope this revival of a less lordly model of Christian leadership will blossom with the Anglican Ordinariates drawing on their Celtic heritage. Its time the Bishops were set free of wordly and secular concerns so they can truly be a spiritual pastor to the priests and the faithful.
The new Ordinariate is called the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of the Southern Cross under the patronage of St Augustine of Canterbury…
I pray that Our Lady of the Southern Cross prospers this new endeavour for the glory of the Kingdom and I ask St Augustine of Canterbury to intercede for it’s spiritual growth and fruitfulness.