Bishop Vincent Nguyen smiles down upon Aurthur Bousfield after receiving him into the Catholic Church. Photo by Evan Boudreau

Toronto Anglican converts join the Roman Catholic tradition

  • April 25, 2012

OSHAWA, Ont. - On the third Sunday of Easter inside the walls of St. Gregory’s Catholic Church 12 new brothers and sisters, all former Anglicans, were welcomed into the Roman Catholic faith.

“The Lord receives you into the Catholic Church,” said Bishop Vincent Nguyen, marking the end of each conversion as the converts knelt before the altar after taking their final steps as Anglicans. With gentle hands Nguyen placed the seal of the Lord on the converts who then rose as Catholics.

“It’s quite an honour to receive these brothers and sister into communion with our Church,” said Nguyen after the hour and 45 minute Mass under the new “Anglican use” liturgy approved by the Vatican. “I could hear them a little bit crying at some points through the Mass so it’s really emotional.”

Among those received were former Anglican priests Fr. James Tilley and Fr. David Garrett, who assisted the bishop during Mass. The converts will belong to a congregation known as the Sodality of the Good Shepherd.

“It feels wonderful for this was a long journey for me particularly,” said Arthur Bousfield, who began his transition in 1979 when his parents left the Anglican Church to join the Anglican Catholic Church of Canada. “We were hoping, even then, that one day there would be a way for us to come into communion with the Holy See.”

Bousfield, 68, and the others from the Sodality of the Good Shepherd will continue to attend Mass that employs the Anglican use liturgy.

It will be said by Fr. Eric Rodrigues until the ordination of a former Anglican priest.

“That’s of particular importance,” Bousfield said. “It’s the liturgy that we grew up with.”

Bousfield’s parents are not alive but he was joined by an old friend who came from Los Angeles to help celebrate the day.

“I knew that sooner or later this day would come,” said Charles Coulombe. “When he told me three weeks ago he was being brought in I said I don’t know how I’ll do it but I’ll be there so here I am.”

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