Monday, 24 February 2014

Luther's Protest is Over...Apparently!

Whoa there! Praise the Lord! Did I just hear a room full of Pentecostals cheering the Pope of Rome? Yes, yes, I think I did. I did! Amen, but its Septuagesima, so I might refrain from saying the 'A' word...for now!

Damian Thompson highlighted the fascinating friendship between the Argentinian Pope Francis and English Episcopal 'Bishop' Tony Palmer. I watched the video on the eminent Dr Thompson's blog of Pope Francis making his 'heart-melting' ecumenical overtures to charismatic evangelicals and thought not a great deal of it. I was disconcerted by His Holiness talking of Tony Palmer as a 'Brother Bishop' since as far as I was told, Anglican orders remain null and void, but I thought to myself, 'Well, the spirit of Vatican II blows where it will...'

If you watch the video above, consider one of these...
What Damian did not show us was exactly to whom this Papal message of fraternity was shown and who its audience turns out to be and I hope His Holiness will not be too offended if I say that to me their beliefs seem highly problematic.

The Pope Francis message, according the footage above, was actually addressed to just one preacher and his (apparently) very, very prosperous flock. The name of this preacher is Word of Faith minister, Kenneth Copeland. You can go to Mr Copeland's website here.

If you watch the long video above (I skipped a lot of it) you will see precisely the audience Pope Francis is embracing, their 'style of worship' and the nature of their Christian beliefs. The 'spiritual hug' that Francis was sending was to an objectively, acutely heretical pastor and his followers, who for some reason think that just because Pope Francis sent a nice message, that what this really meant is that the doctrines of the Catholic Church don't really matter much anymore and with God's help 'we can all work it out' without conforming our beliefs to that of the Catholic Church.

Even the Wikipedia entry on Mr Copeland's cult alone is pretty harrowing, according to which...

'Word of Faith teaching holds that God wants his people to be financially prosperous, as well as have good health, good marriages and relationships, and to live generally prosperous lives. Word of Faith teaches that God empowers his people (blesses them) to achieve the promises that are contained in the Bible. Because of this, suffering does not come from God, but rather, from Satan. As Kenneth Copeland's ministry has stated, the idea that God uses suffering for our benefit is considered to be "a deception of Satan" and "absolutely against the Word of God." Additionally, if someone is not experiencing prosperity, it is because they have given Satan authority over their lives. God will not do anything at all unless the person invites him to.'

KCMC Inside Edition from Louie Verrecchio on Vimeo.

'Bishop' Tony Palmer states at one part of the footage above that Francis and he made a "covenant" when the two met in Rome on 14 February, the Feast of Sts Cyril and Methodius (and St Valentine). He doesn't really say what this "covenant" involves other than going on to proclaim with overwhelming joy that whatever it is that has divided the Catholics and Protestants for centuries is solved by virtue of the new Pope's virtue. In fact, Tony Palmer is decidedly vague about the nature of the 'reconciliation' that the 'spirit of Elijah' is beckoning him to achieve with Pope Francis between Catholics and Evangelicals, Protestant Pentecostals and Charismatics, but still, its an interesting word for Palmer to use. Why, one might ask, would the Vicar of Christ on Earth be making "covenants" with those who do not express any kind of wish to be converted to the Catholic religion, but who instead, seek 'unity'?

The Supreme Pontiff of the Catholic Church suggests towards the end of his message to the group that full unity will be achieved by God ("ask and you will receive") and His Holiness seems certain of it, in an age in which some misguidedly desire 'certainty in all things'. The only problem I foresee with 'unity' with the flock of Kenneth Copeland and his worldwide Word of Faith ministry is that his followers believe in the rather unfranciscan Gospel of prosperity ("ask and you shall receive") as well as numerous other heresies concerning the nature of suffering and, as one might expect, the Word of Faith movement has expressed zero interest in, or understanding of, the Sacraments of the Church, the role of Scripture and Holy Tradition, the Mass, the role of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Priesthood, the Communion of Saints, Purgatory, Catholic worship and the true role of the Successor of St Peter and the Successors of the Apostles, the Bishops. Unity is a great thing, but all who become Catholic must accept Catholic doctrine, such as the perpetual virginity of Our Lady, who most Pentecostals believe was no different to you and I. In fact, she was sinless and is sinless.

May God forgive me for speaking out of turn, but exactly what kind of Miracle of God does His Holiness expect to appear that would see the Catholic Church unite with not just schismatics, but unrepentant, or even invincibly ignorant people? Why would any Pope see unity like this as desirable unless conversion to the doctrines is embraced with it? Loving the Pope is not the standard of Catholicism. Accepting the Magisterium is.

How can the Bride of Christ dream of welcoming in hoards of people who, and I cannot stress this enough, do not believe what the Catholic Church teaches aside from a portion of its morals and a vague belief in the divinity of Christ, though not, of course, the Divine Motherhood of Mary or much else concerning Church doctrine? An Evangelical Ordinariate would be great, if it was established for those who have accepted Church teaching.

Somehow, Tony Palmer, by quoting the Catechism of the Catholic Church on faith, works and justification, asserts that for Pentecostals in the global mega-church of 'Word of Faith', centuries of disagreement between the Church and the Evangelicals is over because Pope Francis sent a word of encouragement to the born again Evangelicals. "Luther's protest is over", apparently! Luther, bless him, just didn't understand what the Church was saying about faith and works. Even the Catechism says so!

One gentleman, called John Edwards, who may or may not remain an Evangelical Christian, blogged that he left 'Word of Faith', which he describes as an unhealthy "cult" and lists 31 reasons why their movement is wrong and yet he, it would appear, remains a Protestant! So if a Protestant who has been in this "cult" rejects its heresies, why is the Successor of St Peter 'reaching out' to them only for the self-proclaimed pastor to call His Holiness, "Sir!"?

Is you a saved pusson?
Please, dear readers, do not think ill of me, nor that I have against the Pentecostal churches anything but the hope that they may recognise in the Successor of St Peter His Holiness, the Vicar of Christ on Earth - rather than a friendly man in white who you call "Sir". The Pope is also the Guardian of the Deposit of Faith and Chief Shepherd to the Faithful. The Faithful, as far as I am led to believe, are bound in conscience to accept all the Teachings of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church as revealed by God and to reject error, false teaching and heresy for the good of our souls and that of others. That would, I think, include the 'Gospel of Prosperity'.

The very fact that Tony Palmer, at one point in the video describes himself as "saved" would suggest to me that he has little understanding of Catholicism, because if there is one thing we are meant to know as Catholics, it is that we cannot know, but only hope that we will be 'saved', since in a State of Grace we should not presume a favourable judgment and we can easily fall out of a State of Grace and into mortal sin quicker than you can say 'apostasy', die that way, choose to remain impenitent and descend immediately into Hell forever and ever. Friends they may be, but if anyone is in a good position to tell this to Tony Palmer, Pope Francis is, since they've apparently been friends for 20 years. Friendship is a beautiful thing, but quite why the Successor of St Peter is sending 'spiritual hugs' and ecumenical overtures to Word of Faith's ministry while its leaders defraud the flock of vast sums of cash in the name of Jesus while promising them earthly riches in return is bizarre. Feeling lovely about each other is not what Unity is about. Christian Unity is about communion in the Church with Peter who feeds the flock the Catholic Truth.

Pray for the Pope and for the conversion of all to the One True Faith.


Nigel Beaill said...

If Francis does not address this group as heretics, why do you go out of your way to do so?

Actually I see what Francis says to be in continuity with Benedict's writings. In one of his books he comments that the old categories of heresy and schism (in relation to the protestant and orthodox) were now meaningless, unhelpful and inaccurate. He spoke of Reformation being over, and those who are members of other church's are mostly so by accident due to birth, rather an intentional protest.

philipjohnson said...

nigel.wrong.wrong ,and wrong again.protestants are heretics full stop.null and void full stop.i do agree with you that this bishop of rome is giving the impression that he is cosy with these heretical cults -you may be forgiven for taking that view.their status is nil .Philip Johnson.


is no such thing as a protestant

church-of any kind.

Nigel Beaill said...

It was the writings from one of Benedict's books that I was referring to, not Francis. In light of this, I see Francis's comments to be the logical continuity of his predecessor.

Chloe said...

Philip is right. Sorry Nigel


Lepanto said...

This is just bloody horrifying. Did you skip the bit in which 'bishop' Tony said that he couldn't send Italians 'converted to Christ' back to the Catholic Church only to have their faith destroyed!

Our Lady of Good Success-pray for us. said...

Nigel, if there's no protest to overcome then why did Benedict issue Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum coetibus?

Pentacostools are dangerous, literally - once the spirit of hands on healing hits them I'd rather be in a room full of crystal gazers. when is Rome going to understand the Protestants by and large hate the Catholic Church and would like nothing better than to witness it's extinction because that would justify their heresy? p.s. I grew up protestant so I know whereof I opine.

all this will do is make people on the wrong path giddy about being the wrong path. frankie is still prodigal and in the pig pen so to speak.

Michael Voris in a radio interview talks about this evangelical hatred of the Cross.

JB said...

Objectively, of course, it is still heresy.

What strikes me most, however, is the coldness and ruthlessness with which the SSPX are treated in comparison with these Lutherans. It's remarkable.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this Mr. L.

Well, it is quite clear now that we really can't count on this Pope to defend the One True Faith at all ...unless something "happens" to turn him inside out and start anew his papacy.

He's too much...this past year has been a nightmare for serious Catholics who must defend the Supremacy of the Pope ...but with one like this...making a mockery of the Highest Office in the world...what's a genuine Catholic to do?

Honestly, every Hail Mary I say for this Pope weighs a ton...I cannot understand him nor can I follow his example...he is most definitely confusing the Catholic flock...who know that it was the Catholic Church that BUILT western civilisation ...and these self-indulging (making God in their own image)cults of pentecostalism represent the very opposite of what the Church has always taught...

Come on, this mushiness and tenderness to the world is now getting totally ridiculous...the betrayal is a terrible thing though...


Lee Gilbert said...

Pope Benedict was known as the Pope of Christian unity because he rolled out the red carpet for Anglicans and approved the Ordinariate, for people who were once heretics and enemies. Now that Pope Francis is casting a much wider net ( and remember the vocation of Peter is to be catching men) why do you fault him? What kind of sense does it make to criticize him for attempting to draw into the Church people who do not yet believe everything that we believe, whether Pentecostals, Evangelicals, Jews or atheists? We cannot begin with where people are and attempt to draw them in?

Out of basic courtesy, many unbelievers will refer to Catholic priests as "Father" and we out of courtesy will refer to protestant pastors as "Reverend." If the Pope refers to a bishop who is not yet in communion with us ( and as a matter of fact he may be validly but illicitly ordained a bishop) as "Bishop," why do you fault him? Essentially the Counter-reformation is over. To achieve the unity Christ wants, we are trying a different tack. That does not mean that we are abandoning any of our beliefs or disciplines.

I would say this too, with such vituperation directed at those who are not yet in communion with us, with such disrespect shown to Pope Francis, be very careful that you do not find yourself on the outside looking in, outside with your head held high and sniffing at the "accursed who know not the law." This apparently would include the Pope!

Unknown said...

Heresy is the obstacle to Christian unity. If the heretic isn't willing to leave the heresy how can there be unity? The apostles named and condemned heresy in the New Testament. St. Paul excommunicated 2 people with the phrase "whom I have handed over to Satan..." (1 Timothy 20) This describes the state of a soul when it has no access to channels of grace that proceed from Jesus through Catholic church. There are numerous verses in the NT on apostasy, doctrine, heresy. This is no fad of the middle ages!

I am reading a wonderful book, "Salvation is From the Jews" by Roy Schoeman, a Jewish man who has joyfully accepted Catholicism as the completion of Judaism. Toward the end he mentions several Jewish converts, including Alphonse Ratisbonne. Long story short, he saw an apparition of the Virgin Mary in a church and her likeness is the image you have in your banner atop the page. This is noteworthy on this topic because Ratisbonne was a virulently anti-Catholic atheist and through the grace of God and the tender loving kindness of our Blessed Mother he converted on the spot and became a priest whose mission it was to convert other Jews.
I am becoming convinced that it is through God's mysterious will that the grace for conversion is given. It is probably just hubris to think we can persuade someone to see the truth.

The Bones said...

'Pope Benedict was known as the Pope of Christian unity because he rolled out the red carpet for Anglicans and approved the Ordinariate, for people who were once heretics and enemies. Now that Pope Francis is casting a much wider net ( and remember the vocation of Peter is to be catching men) why do you fault him?'

Because Anglicans who came over in the Ordinariate were permitted generously to keep their Anglican traditions and patrimony, but gave assent to ALL THAT THE CHURCH TEACHES TO BE TRUE AND REVEALED BY GOD.

There is the difference.

Codgitator (Cadgertator) said...

If he were to extend the same fraternal greeting to Spong and a woman bishop, would that be at all problematic? Or are we supposed to give the nice heretics a pass? The pope's good chum Welby has spoken clearly about how flimsy the traditional episcopacy is, and I admit I have no confidence that Francis doesn't agree with him at some troubling level. Sure, he has rejected the ordination of women, but, significantly, did so on curiously moralistic versus dogmatic grounds (i.e. it is clericalism and chauvinism to think that women need ordination to enjoy equal dignity). Sigh.

Our Lady of Good Success-pray for us. said...


2jn.1.9 Whosoever revolteth, and continueth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that continueth in the doctrine, the same hath both the Father and the Son. 1.10 If any man come to you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into the house nor say to him, God speed you. 1.11 For he that saith unto him, God speed you, communicateth with his wicked works.

A Catholic does not endorse heresy or a that Catholic makes himself a heretic.

Our Lady of Good Success-pray for us. said...

p.s. I would be willing to bet there wouldn't be one seasoned Catholic exorcist who would think that anything other than satanic 'energy' passes through the hands of 'healing' of heretics at these gatherings, and a bishop is not only patting them on the back but saying, 'people, buy the book!'. If one has been able to see the 'fruits' of these charismatic madhouses, it is not good.

Vincent said...

I'm so sorry Bones, but your previous post was much better. It really highlighted your rhetorical ability, this one doesn't.

I feel that there needs to be a bit of perspective here. We should all be hoping for the uniting of the Christian denominations under the banner of the Holy Church, and to do that we need to talk to the others, and bring them round. Most people haven't been taught anything about the Catholic Church, they just assume what they've been told is true. They think of Catholic beliefs as being essentially pagan. Not even joking, I have to explain Catholic beliefs regularly to protestants, and they've no idea what they believe in or what we believe in.

Like I say, some perspective! I quote an email from the university Catholic Student Society. It's a brilliant example of what ecumenism is. Sending a video message, this isn't.

"This week CaSSoc have been warmly invited to visit the Mosque in ___. It is a great opportunity to learn a little more about Islam as we have been welcomed to join in their prayer and they have put aside time for a question and answer session afterwards. Out of respect would everyone coming please dress conservatively, covering arms/shoulders/knees. It is also respectful for women to wear some form of head-covering. For those who don't know the way to the Mosque we will be meeting at ____ at 6:45pm to walk there together, or you can meet us at the Mosque for 7:30pm."

Lee Gilbert said...

Bones, You write:
"Because Anglicans who came over in the Ordinariate were permitted generously to keep their Anglican traditions and patrimony, but gave assent to ALL THAT THE CHURCH TEACHES TO BE TRUE AND REVEALED BY GOD."

To me this is totally incomprehensible. Do you seriously mean that that the only people the Pope can speak to about the Church are people who already accept the teaching of the Church? What do you think was happening in that video, that the Pope was admitting all the people in that conference into the Church en masse!!? That would be problematical to be sure. But that he addresses them with some nostalgia in the hopes of reunion you find obnoxious. I honestly don't get it. Would you be offended if for some of these people the Pope's remarks were a wake up call and they went out to find a copy of the Catholic Catechism to find out what we're all about? It distresses me to think that as the result of Tony Palmer's remarks and those of the Pope, some sincere Pentecostals should begin an online investigation of the Church and stumble upon your insulting, unwelcoming and hostile post.
Let us suppose that Kenneth Copeland is a complete charlatan, and the Word of Faith Church heretical to the nth degree. We cannot speak kindly to them? We cannot pray and hope for their salvation? We cannot make the case for the Church to them?
Saul of Tarsus was very blessed in that he lived when so many Christians still remembered Our Lord's tone of voice and the look in his eyes when he said, "Love your enemies, do good to those who persecute you." Reading between the lines, it seems very reasonable to think he was prayed into the Church by faithful and forgiving Catholics, and that without those prayers the conversion on the road to Damascus would never have happened.
Let us be a little anachronistic for a moment and locate you, your blog, and the blogsphere back in the first century. You have just seen a video of St. Peter speaking to an as yet unconverted Saul of Tarsus. What sort of blog would you write? Is there any reason to think you would not have written the very same sort of blogpost you composed about the as yet unconverted Kenneth Copeland? May God have mercy on you should you be responsible for the loss of so much as one convert to the Church. The other day I saw someone reprimanded for giving money to a homeless couple, and why? Because the man yells at his wife, and moreover he smokes. You would think Our Lord stipulated that we should only extend mercy to the perfect, whereas in fact he did not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance (Luke 5:32).

You would be doing yourself and the Church a very big favor if you were not only to take down you post, but to apologize for it

The Bones said...

My point is that these people believe they are already SAVED.

Our Lady of Good Success-pray for us. said...

So who is the Lord? Who gets to define the Lord? The problem with Protestantism is that it all becomes subjective. No, lee - Protestants, Jews, Muslims, pagans, whatever, are capable of hearing God's call, and converting to the One, True, Faith; having a pope contradict that voice is not helpful.

what I see is people who know better constantly playing apologist, having sympathy for the devil because of his elevated position. And then if the next Pope stood up and insisted all clergy take the oath against modernist or they are excommunicated - what then? No one could complain because this is in keeping with the Church and the 'authentic magisterium'.

PseudonymousposterJohn said...

This vid was the first time I had seen a complete Hor-hay /‘Fr Mario’ [who on earth is that?] performance. I was not impressed either by its tone and attitude nor intellectual content.
Somewhere in here I do get round to quoting Dwight Longnecker. Whatever we may think of his other sayings or contacts, I think he describes the anglican shenanigans well.

Bergoglio was not bothered about addressing himself to the Copeland ‘ministries’ conference. Of whom he probably really had never heard. Nor had I. I do hear of various american preachers from time to time, but never this one. Grandpa Munster, after undergoing surgery more extensive than his son-in-law got, I think.
But he got on with Tony because he seemed the sort of pentecostal he could understand – because the anglicans above all have fetishized what they believe passes for episcopacy and they obsessively dress rather like catholic bishops. Or Christian bishops, as I would call them.
[I do believe that one of the most unfortunate merchandising techniques even international ‘anglicanism’ or the ‘communion’ has is the rather nice and historic stolen property in England. It gives the otherwise slightly meaningless term ‘anglicanism’ cachet. ]

The territorial nature of the responsibility means that there can be no overlapping jurisdictions of true bishops, so one is, and all the others aren’t real. [Bergoglio’s action in refusing to hand out honorary titles is exactly wrong – it is all those honorary archbishops without real sees that are wrong.]
From Montini onwards the vatican has been prepared to be charmed by anglicans, especially the anglican ‘bishops’. Do you remember the meeting with Michael Ramsey? Nice man. Meant well. Said once to be very clever. Not really that impressive. Actually started the management of expectations about declining numbers. Wrong or else dishonest about that.

They like the anglican ‘bishops’ because they think that makes them all in the same club. At one point the methodists were planning on renaming some of their officials ‘bishops’ literally to help in ecumenical gatherings. All feel safe if everyone is in the bishops’ title club.

And it is an activity without a meaning.

It’s like the foreign ministers of murderous dictatorships hobnobbing at the UN with the slightly less disreputable ones.
[Fr Dwight Longenecker has a few interesting observations on the (very) unofficial anglican scene.]

PseudonymousposterJohn said...

The other thing the vatican does is take the talk of ecumenism too seriously.

That was the most worrying thing JMB said. What was the line?, -when the world sees our unity, then they will all come in.*
Naïve faith, not in our Lord, but in some of the tenets of vatii.
[The epistle for Sexagesima contains the line, in English, ‘My strength is made perfect in weakness’; (the most moving sermon I ever heard was from an old style anglican Low Churchman who quoted this line, and he had probably never even touched a missal in his life). S Paul knew that. At least one anglican and his hearers knew it.]

Ecumenism, as I always say, was just the Church’s attempt to get itself in on some of the action they had seen the prot denominations getting up to. Maybe the Church thinks it has a greater responsibility for unity because it really is the Church. But I say one simply cannot deal with the likes of the burgeoning new split-off Anglican groups. They like to set up new jurisdictions. No one could even keep track of them, let alone pursue visible unity. One might also comments that it is a pity this sort of thing can be accommodated when the Friars can be accused of ‘cryptolefebvrism’. Even little billy gates knows that is not a word.

Why not say, ‘when they see the Lord presented in the Mass, in the Sacrament, /on the cross, they will want to enter the Church?’ Your guess is as good as mine.

- At least I suppose the man expects to see Christian triumph in some nebulous way. I wonder if he is clear–sighted enough. There are swedish cabinet ministers who think islam is going to take over – their country, /the continent?, and they think (wrongly) that they can curry favour by flattering them. They won’t fight for their absurd liberalism. But it seems JMB wants to do something almost like fighting for his church/the church/ The Church. Only trouble is, it is quite the wrong fight.

All the activity to join up with absurdo-peculiar schismatics and in many cases very tiny groups is a waste. Who are they? Where can one find them? There are whole ‘denominations’ that are smaller than some of the US megachurches. It’s like trying to grab eels.
This man lives in both Umbria (mmm; Chiantishire) and Wiltshire. There might be one congregation there. I would have no difficulty in saying the anglican assistant bishop of Swindon probably does more for the gospel in those parts. And that’s saying something for me.

PseudonymousposterJohn said...

Benedict had the right idea with the Ordinariate.

Someone suggested to me that talking to these people gave them false hope. Tony suffers no such problem. He has been recognized as being a bishop by the pope and has a (possibly) committee role in the Church – as well as the chance to turn Catholics charismatic.

It was often said that all sorts of protestants wanted to get in on anglicanism, not because they believed in ‘the national church’ but because it was a ‘good place to go fishing’ in. So, clearly the same with the promoters of charismatic movement. They want easy converts. Why convert people from one part of Christianity (the authentic one) to another? Hmm. Could it be because of money?

Generations of dreary nonentities from the seventies said they liked the ecumenism. And now it seems JMB likes it too. I still say it is meaningless and a diversion away from mission. And now they have found some groovier ‘ecumenical partners’ than the boring old URC : open/charismatic/ pentecostal/ evangelical/ anglican/ ‘catholics’. What, no one’s ‘Oriental’ and ‘Orthodox’ too?

AND, and this is perhaps the most disturbing thing, they are using these people, both to work for their ideas of ‘renewal’ inside, and so to infect Christians already within the church.

In the past, people had no idea what the pope did, thought or looked like. It didn’t matter then and it ought not to matter to us now. [Well, except for what his policies are doing. He is waking up all those aging baby boomer sixties hippies who still have money and bodily strength. Or at least breath. Or a keyboard. One does not need to ‘say’ anything any more.] We were just lucky for a while that the pope was Benedict. He was serious and I believe, most importantly, honest. He thought, he tried to communicate what he had thought about.
JP2? He went all out for the media image, but in some ways it was artless and sincere. He actually believed in big open air events and that was what got the media’s attention. At the moment, we are unlucky. The world loves him, and that says something. The Christians are troubled by him and that says something more. One friend of mine simply said, ‘he’s an idiot’. [Please remember the owner of this blog did not say that. And I did not say that: I quote a friend] That seems entirely possible. [I DID say that] And that is no bar to advancement in italian culture. [And I REALLY mean that.]

PseudonymousposterJohn said...

I am afraid we have to say that the Catholic in the pew is probably the best and most important Christian and the denizens of the curia are rather less so.
Perhaps the atmosphere there is too rarified and they get to hallucinating or something. Perhaps on the top floor of the ever-so-‘umble guesthouse it is most rarified of all.

-The rather millenarian idea of all coming in* when ‘they’ see ‘us’ to have done something, is not new in Rome. I don’t personally know what whackiness may have gone on around the year 1000, but a lot was going on around 1500. Not quite sure why. They were bored because they had no tv?

The building of the Sistine chapel was regarded as being the recreation of the Temple of Solomon in some symbolic form (despite its obviously not being) and so being the key to a divine intervention in history. Which ‘we’ would control and give cause to while God’s action would be prompted by us. This is sympathetic magic, not Christianity. – I rely on the Guardian arts critic Waldemar Whathisface’s old tv show for the account of this. He quoted the sermon preached on the opening day and that described this motivation openly, which must be recorded in the archives.

Hasn’t the Church taught that God’s will is known to him alone and so a desire to ‘make’ the end of time and second coming appear by forcing God’s hand would be a sin? To say the least.

Hence I say it is not those ecclesiastical managers who matter most but the individual worshipper who is supposed to be served by their efforts.

So this is another new ‘ecumenical’ project started by schismatics that the Church has not seen coming, but j-m.b. thinks he would like to play catch up to now.

The Church’s stance ought to be clear : to say,
‘how nice you want to ‘converge’. When you are ready to join us, the door is here’
And that’s it.
Letting them in by the back door to do not-entirely-sure-what unofficially/semi-officially recognized seems poor policy.

–This is not offering them false hopes of unity.
Tony has been invited into the kitchen and is even now warming his feet by the Aga.
Do they think there is a potential for pentecostal leakage in italy, perhaps due to the charismatic movement? So they think getting tony and mrs tony on board keeps that sort of a thing ‘in the family’?

- There is more but this is the most pertinent part of what Longenecker has to say: “One has to ask, when Tony Palmer presented himself therefore as “an Anglican Bishop” did Archbishop Bergoglio of Argentina have any idea that this was the background and was he aware of this rapidly shifting identity of Anglicanism? I suspect he did not. How was a Catholic bishop in Argentina expected to be aware of the mushrooming complexity of Anglicanism? No doubt as their friendship developed Bishop Bergoglio became aware of the real situation."

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