Archbishop Louis Falk, Unity, Accountability and the Blogs

I refer you to a previous post, that is drawing a fair amount of attention and comment. I’ll tell you why this is so in a minute. But first note this comment by a one Glenda Lough:

‘Archbishop Falk Not Joining the Ordinariate’ -wonderful headline, redolent of the equally risible and bathetic ‘Queen Not Dead’ headline which appeared in the (UK) Sunday Times some years ago.

John Bruce responds:

This blog entry from 2010 makes it plain that Falk had been aligned with Bps Campese and Moyer within the ACA as favoring Anglicanorum coetibus. I believe the headline appropriately expresses a change in views by Falk, whereas the Queen does not change state until she passes away.

See here’s the thing about the blogs: They hold people accountable. It’s very easy to vilify the blogs, when they don’t suit your purposes, when you don’t agree with what is being said on them, and when they expose otherwise unpopular truths.

Archbishop Louis Falk was the once Primate of the TAC, a public figure, who (like many others) stridently lead us the way of the Ordinariate. He then dropped off the radar. Just like that. Rumours and speculation naturally abounded. Now, you don’t get to do that. You don’t get to do an about-face, and that under the assumption that people have simply forgotten. He was pro-Ordinariate. Now he is not going. And he doesn’t even have the mettle to stand up and say so. Simple accountability. And accountable he is (!), to all those he (once) lead down a path of Christian unity, a path that is now fast becoming nothing more than a most inconvenient blight, a matter the sooner forgotten, the better, or at least, so it would seem…

Cave, cave, deus videt.

Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.

– Hebrews 4:13


Archbishop Louis Falk Not Joining the Ordinariate

Fr Chori Seraiah:

I have been fairly silent lately. Yes, I have been busy, but there is more to it than that. It has been difficult for me to hold my tongue, but it was necessary. New events have occurred and I am able to answer the questions that many have been asking. My former parish St. Aidan’s here in Des Moines has made its final decision and chosen notto join the Ordinariate after all. They will remain Anglican and Bp. Louis Falk is remaining with them (any questions about the parish itself should be directed to them and not to me). It has been a very difficult time for them, as they had come to realize that the Ordinariate was not what they wanted (at the same time that I was in the process for ordination–not an easy task for any parish). I am happy to say that there is no strife between the parish and I (or my family either). Each of us realized that we were not on the same path, and yet there is peace between us. I ask everyone to pray for them at this time.

I, on the other hand, am happily serving as a substitute hospital chaplain (a very rewarding ministry!) for the next few months, and in the meantime I am seeking to begin an Ordinariate community here in Des Moines. Anyone interested in being a part of this, please let me know by contacting me at my email address listed to the left side of this page. I am especially seeking any Anglicans/Episcopalians who are interested in what the Ordinariate has to offer; Lutherans may also find something of interest in this venture.

When there is a detour in the route we plan for our lives we can spend our time griping about the new path, or we can accept it and realize that God likes to send us surprises. I like to say, “want to make God laugh? tell Him your plans!” The wonderful part is that whenever God changes our plans for us, He always gives us far greater blessings than we would have ever come up with were the decisions entirely ours. The diocese of Des Moines, and especially Bishop Richard Pates, has been a special blessing to us, for which we thank God daily. There has been so much love and support that I do not have the ability to list all the things that people have done for me and my family in the past month alone. God’s grace continues to amaze me.

HT:  Michael Frost

UPDATE I:    Archbishop Louis Falk, Unity, Accountability and the Blogs.

UPDATE II:    Deborah Gyapong comments on the above:

It is sad news to see Archbishop Louis Falk is not joining the Ordinariate and that St. Aidan’s has decided not to join either. I have never met him, but I know he was a staunch advocate of Christian unity when he was Primate of the Traditional Anglican Communion (TAC)…

The whole exercise has left behind such pain and bitterness. The TAC did ask for some form of corporate reunion but the only corporate reunion that ended up on offer was parish by parish, reconstituted after individuals had converted. I do not blame Archbishop Hepworth for his overly expansive interpretation of Anglicanorum coetibus. As fine a mind as Fr. Aidan Nichols’ told me he didn’t see why the document could not cover the corporate reunion of a diocese or even a province.

For many the unfolding of the Ordinariates’ character might seem too much like absorption, too much like a loss of identity for those hoping for corporate reunion of some kind.

Thankfully for us we have not experienced our coming into the Catholic Church as a loss of identity at all. Our celebrations of the Eucharist on Sundays and everything else we do is not much different from what we did before we became Catholic. We have guest priests now, but they love our patrimony and are doing their best to help us maintain it as we wait for our own clergy to be ordained as Catholic priests.

But this was not an easy journey. For some it has proved impossible, at least for now.

Let’s keep our comments respectful and measured, seeing as I trust most of us do hope for the Ordinariates to be successful and that eventually those who are unsure now might find them truly places where Anglican identity and patrimony are flourishing within the Catholic Church.



Religion at the Olympics, from Ancient Greece to London

Religion News Service:

A 600-foot footrace was the only athletic event at the first Olympics, a festival held in 776 B.C. and dedicated to Zeus, the chief Greek god.

For the next millennium, Greeks gathered every four years in Olympia to honor Zeus through sports, sacrifices and hymns. The five-day festival brought the Greek world together in devotion to one deity.

What began in ancient Greece as a festival to honor a single god, Zeus, has now become an almost Olympian task, as organizers of the games navigate dozens of sacred fasts, religious rituals and holy days.

The London Olympics will try to accommodate religious athletes with 193 chaplains, a prayer room in every venue and a multifaith center in the Olympic Village.

Athletes at the ancient Olympics believed their training honored the gods, and victory was a sign of favor from a deity. As contests like wrestling, boxing, and horse racing were added to the Olympic roster, they supplemented devotional sacrifices, hymns, and ceremonies.

“The idea was that you were training to please Zeus. But part of the festival would be to visit the temple, visit the cult statues, making offerings, celebrating and seeing your family,” said David Gilman Romano, a professor of Greek archaeology at the University of Arizona.

The combination of Greek sport and worship led the Roman Emperor Theodosius I, a Christian, to ban the Olympics in 393 A.D.

The Frenchman Pierre de Coubertin revived the Olympic Games in Athens in 1896 after excavations at Olympia renewed public interest in the athletics and pageantry of the Olympics.

Though not sectarian, the modern games began to take on their own quasi-religious rituals.

Coubertin borrowed ceremonies, hymns, and rituals from the ancient festival to shape a transcendent “Olympism,” uniting all athletes. Some scholars today refer to his creation as a “civil religion.”

“The civil religion was not so much the worship or devotion to the state, as it is often now understood,” explained Joseph Price, a professor of religion at Whittier College in California who researches sport and religion. Devotion “was to the civitas, the human group that transcended a particular religion.”

Over the years, the International Olympic Committee and host states introduced “new” symbols to bolster Olympism, said Stephen Mosher, professor of sport management and media at Ithaca College in New York.

Still, the modern games have touches from the ancient past…

Rest here.



Did St Paul Attend the Olympics?

Bishop Kevin Farrell:

St. Paul could have attended the Olympic Games in ancient Greece. He was in Greece when they were being played. He never mentioned the Olympics in his letters, but he has a lot to say about winning.

“Do you not know that the runners in the stadium all run in the race, but only one wins the prize? Run so as to win. Every athlete exercises discipline in every way. They do it to win a perishable crown, but we an imperishable one.(1 Cor 9:24-25)

He is not talking about “winning the gold.” The prize St. Paul is referring to is “an imperishable one,” and the race he is referring to is the journey we all make to God. The great thing about this race is that everybody can win the prize. But, like the Olympians, it takes determination and self-discipline.

Athletes from throughout the world are in London this week to compete for the “perishable prize” referred to by St. Paul. Most of them have trained for years to make it to the Olympics. They have willingly sacrificed many legitimate pleasures in order to prepare their bodies for a single moment of glory and piece of precious metal on a ribbon. They compete knowing that the odds are against most of them.

Our training regimen for our race for the imperishable prize is much simpler. We heard it in the first reading of the Mass last Monday. “…to act justly, to love tenderly and to walk humbly with your God.” (Micah 6:8)

I look forward to the Olympics. Let’s enjoy the games, but let’s never lose sight of our own race and the imperishable prize.