VATICAN CITY - After consultation with the governing council of the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter, Pope Francis named Msgr. Steven Lopes to be the first bishop of the ordinariate, which serves former Anglicans living in full communion with the Roman Catholic Church.

Published in Vatican

SYDNEY - Australia's new personal ordinariate will be a "homecoming" for former Anglicans joining the Catholic Church later this year.

The ordinariate of Our Lady of the Southern Cross, under the patronage of St. Augustine of Canterbury, will be established June 15 by the Vatican.

Holy Cross Church in Melbourne is the first church to be designated for the ordinariate.

Published in International

VATICAN CITY - In the days after the hoopla of the consistory for new cardinals left town, a smaller but more historic group of pilgrims was making its way to the tomb of the apostle Peter and the seat of his successor.

A pilgrimage of thanksgiving arrived from Britain — some 100 members of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham, the new “diocese” set up for former Anglicans who are now Catholics, but with the special task of preserving their Anglican cultural and liturgical patrimony. Some two years after Pope Benedict XVI made it possible with his document Anglicanorum Coetibus, the new structure is established in Britain and more recently also in the United States. The arrival of new Catholics from Britain, small in number but fervent in faith, was experienced as a “homecoming” by them, and a tiny step toward healing the breach of the divisions of the 16th century.

Published in Fr. Raymond de Souza

VATICAN CITY - For perhaps the first time ever, Anglican hymns, chants and prayers reverberated off the marble walls of St. Peter's Basilica as some members of the world's first ordinariate for former Anglicans celebrated their coming into the Catholic Church.

"Wonderful is not a strong enough word to express how we feel to be here," where the apostle Peter gave his life "and where his successors guarded the faith for generations," said Father Len Black in his homily.

Published in International

KITCHENER, ONT. - The new year meant a new beginning for a group of Anglicans from Kitchener-Waterloo, Ont.

On Jan. 1, 12 individuals from that area were received as a community into full communion in the Roman Catholic Church during an Anglican Use-rite Mass at the Cathedral of Christ the King in Hamilton. The liturgy was presided over by Bishop Douglas Crosby and celebrated by their former priest-mentor, now chaplain, Fr. William Foote. The group made a profession of faith and received the sacraments of Confirmation and the Eucharist.

Now known as the Sodality of St. Edmund, King and Martyr, under the oversight of the diocese of Hamilton initially, they become the second community of Canadian Anglicans to be so received, following St. John the Evangelist in Calgary, which entered the Church on Dec. 18.

Published in Canada

CALGARY - Inglewood is an old neighbourhood in Calgary, the sort of place where you find a church nestled between modest homes, rather than surrounded by a vast suburban parking lot. But something new is happening here, or something old becoming something new — or perhaps even something new becoming something old.

The parish of St. John the Evangelist used to be an Anglican parish, but just a week before Christmas the pastor, Fr. Lee Kenyon, his wife Elizabeth, and almost the entire congregation of about 75 souls were received into full communion with the Catholic Church. Bishop Frederick Henry of Calgary received the group and graciously welcomed into his diocese a new parish. They call themselves an “Anglican Use” oparish, meaning that while fully Catholic and in communion with the bishop of Rome, they use a form of the liturgy more in keeping with their Anglican traditions.

Published in Fr. Raymond de Souza

WASHINGTON - Pope Benedict XVI has established a U.S. ordinariate for former Anglicans who wish to become Catholics and named a married former Episcopal bishop to head it.

The Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter -- functionally equivalent to a diocese, but national in scope -- will be based at a parish in Houston. It will be led by Father Jeffrey N. Steenson, the former Episcopal bishop of the Rio Grande who was ordained a Catholic priest of the Archdiocese of Santa Fe, N.M., in February 2009.

Published in International