The first principle of the Ordinariate is then about Christian unity. St. Basil the Great, the Church’s greatest ecumenist, literally expended his life on the work of building bridges between orthodox brethren who shared a common faith, but who had become separated from one another in a Church badly fragmented by heresy and controversy. He taught that the work of Christian unity requires deliberate and ceaseless effort...St. Basil often talked with yearning about the archaia agape, the ancient love of the apostolic community, so rarely seen in the Church of his day. This love, he taught, is a visible sign that the Holy Spirit is indeed present and active, and it is absolutely essential for the health of the Church.

- Msgr. Jeffrey Steenson, Homily on the Occasion of his Formal Institution as Ordinary

Sunday, January 25, 2015

The Causes for My Becoming Catholic

To close out the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, we present this article from Anglican Embers by the leader of the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter, Msgr. Jeffrey Steenson. Writing about his motivation for becoming Catholic, he follows in the footsteps of Fr. Paul Wattson, creator of the Chair of Unity Octave, in finding his own personal communion with the Apostolic See to be the basis for furthering the cause of Christian unity.
Read the article at the Anglican Embers page of the Anglican Use Society site:

Thursday, January 22, 2015

In celebration of the Holy See's vision for Christian Unity

On February 1st, Septuagesima, the chancery building for the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter will be dedicated. The new ordinariate missal Divine Worship is also due to be presented at that time.

And a mere week later, on Sexegesima, all three ordinaries of the Personal Ordinariates will gather in London to celebrate a solemn Evensong & Benediction in celebration of the Holy See's vision for Christian Unity, of which the Ordinariates are a key part.

Please pray for the Ordinaries and all the people of the Ordinariate and the unity of all Christians.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

On the primacy of the Pope

St. Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians that "To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. " And so the same is of course true for the apostles. In John's Gospel, Jesus bestows the name Peter on Simon during their first meeting. This name is representative of the gift that Peter will be given as leader of the apostolic college, which is further explained later in John's Gospel when Peter is commanded to "feed my sheep" and in Luke's Gospel where Jesus assures Peter that he has prayed for him so that he will be able to strengthen his brethren.

In his article on the Joint International Catholic-Orthodox Theological Commission, meeting in Ravenna, Italy, Msgr. Daniel Hamilton looks at the primacy of Peter and of his successors in the Apostolic See, that same seat of unity which Father Paul of Greymoor felt so key to the unity of the Church.

Read it at the Anglican Embers web site on the Anglican Use Society site:

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Dedication services for new Chancery of US Ordinariate set for February 1-2

We are pleased to share with you the dates and times for the Chancery dedication for the Ordinariate. Please mark your calendars for February 1-2, 2015.The formalities officially begin with Evensong at 4:00pm on Sunday; however, Mass will be celebrated that morning at 11:15 in the presence of His Eminence William Cardinal Levada, who will be the homilist. Please let us know if you plan to be at the Mass and (for clergy) if you plan to concelebrate. We will send out more information in early January with the particulars for Mass and for Evensong.
We hope many of you can attend. Please do not hesitate to let us now in the Ordinariate office me know if you have questions.

from the Ordinariate Observer, Winter 2014-15 edition.

Choral Evensong to celebrate the 3rd Anniversary of the US Ordinariate

The congregation of St. Gregory the Great in Stoneham, Mass. will be celebrating the 3rd anniversary of the founding of the US Ordinariate on January 28th, with Boston Archbishop Sean Patrick Cardinal O'Malley as officiant.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Keep the Mass in Christmas

 "Whereas we not only use it as a nourishment spiritual, as that it is too, but as a mean also to renew as ‘covenant’ with God by virtue of that ‘sacrifice’ as the Psalmist speaketh."

Lancelot Andrews, a bishop in the regin of James I and VI, and the head of the team charged with the translation of the Scriptures into English now known as the Authorized Version or King James Version, was insistent that in the Lord's Supper we are not only nourished by a spiritual meal, but renew the covenant with God through the one Sacrifice of Christ.

And this is only fitting. In the seventh chapter of Leviticus we read "For the wave breast and the heave shoulder have I taken of the children of Israel from off the sacrifices of their peace offerings, and have given them unto Aaron the priest and unto his sons by a statute for ever from among the children of Israel;" and in many other places of the Old Testament it is clear that only the priests could eat of the sacrifices of the Tabernacle and Temple. Jesus confirms this in his dispute with the Pharisees when, in chapter 6 of Luke he asks them "Have you not read what David did when he was hungry, he and those who were with him: how he entered the house of God, and took and ate the bread of the Presence, which it is not lawful for any but the priests to eat, and also gave it to those with him?"

But we are assured in the first epistle of St. Peter that all of us who are baptized are "living stones...built into a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ." And our priesthood is seen, not in that we each offer the sacrifice, for even in the time of the Temple every priest did not offer the sacrifice, as only one at a time could do so, (and hence Zechariah was chosen by lot from among his section of the priesthood to offer the incense on the day he encounted the Archangel), but in that we eat of the Sacrifice.

The best way to keep Christ in Christmas, as others have noted, is to keep the Mass in Christmas. May all of our readers be blessed in the days to come when we remember the tender love of our Savior who came to dwell in humble surroundings that we might share in his glory.

Read, mark, learn and inwardly digest the wise words from the Anglican Patrimony in Bishop Andrewes' text from our Pentecost 2010 (Vol III, No. 2) issue: 

Sunday, December 21, 2014

A sermon preached on the Fourth Sunday of Advent

"The day Mary said yes is the day the human race made a new start."

Today is Rorate Sunday, the name taken from the first word of the Introit for today's Mass, and a text often heard in the beautiful plain chant of the hymn "Rorate Caeli de super". And it is a fitting text for the day the Church sets aside during Advent to recall Mary's "Fiat' to the Archangel's message which was the dawn of our salvation.

Father Bradford of St. Athanasius preached a sermon on this topic which was published in the Advent 2009 issue of Anglican Embers (Volume II, Number 12).

As a bonus, the last page also includes the poem "Anagram on Mary" by Anglican pastor and poet George Herbert.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Christ and Hanukkah (Did Jesus Have a Dradle?)

From the Advent 2005 issue of Anglican Embers (Volume 1, Number 8) comes this Bible study by Mark J. Kelly, one of the founders of the Anglican Use Society, on the revelation of Christ during the Jewish Festivals, and particularly during the Feast of the Dedication as related in the tenth chapter of St. John's Gospel. Here the light of the world points to himself as the true Temple, the true home of the Shekinah of God.

"John wants us to look at Christ with new eyes. He would have us behold the glory of Christ who came to the people of his day. Jesus shone as a light that drew people to Him, like a moth to a warm and glowing flame on a long winter vigil. St. John delights to play with verbs of sight in his Gospel. There are over 170 uses of such simple but crucial words (many occurring in the first chapter) as “look, see, revealed, manifest, behold etc.” These plain but pivotal verbs set a tone and preach their own message in the theological Gospel of John. In other words, John is a Gospel of vision, and new sight."

Read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest:

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Christmas Lessons and Carols in Boston

For those of you who would like to attend, the Congregation of St. Athanasius will be continuing the celebration of Christmas with Lessons and Carols on Sunday, December 28th at the Church of St. Lawrence. 

A Living and Developing Patrimony: A Homily on Acts 10:17-33.

"At every pivotal moment in the Church’s history, Peter is there, the person of the Pope, the Vicar of Christ, who carries the mission forward, keeping the Church ever ancient and ever new, as he’s doing now, in our own day."

From the 2011 Anglican Use Conference at St. Mary the Virgin in Arlington, Texas, Fr. Christopher Phillips preached this homily, which was published in Volume 3, Number 9 (Lent 2012) issue of Anglican Embers. Preaching on the reception of Cornelius and his household into the Church, Fr. Phillips' homily is perhaps something to read and meditate on in a time when many in the Church are perturbed about current events in Rome and reports about Pope Francis.