Thursday, 22 March 2012

This is the Appropriate Moment

Anglo-Catholics might be interested in an open letter that was sent earlier this week, on the Solemnity of St Joseph, by Monsignor Nicola Bux (Consultor to the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith) to Bishop Bernard Fellay and to all the priests of the Society of St Pius X.  Christian Unity is high up the agenda in Rome. 

The letter contains much that is entirely specific to the situation of the SSPX.  However, if one excludes those sections, could the text not equally be addressed to some of those in the Anglican Communion pondering their futures?  The letter, driven by the efforts of Pope Benedict XVI, this Pope of Christian Unity, to reunite the flock in one fold under one shepherd, contains points that will resonate deeply with many in that situation.

You can find the complete text in English on the website of the Rorate Coeli blog, but here are some relevant extracts of their translation from Monsignor Bux's French original
........Christian brotherhood is stronger than flesh and blood because it offers us, thanks to the divine Eucharist, a foretaste of heaven.

Christ invited us to experience communion, this is what our "I" is made of. Communion means loving one's neighbor a priori, because we have the one Savior in common with him. Based on this fact, communion is ready for every sacrifice in the name of unity; and this unity must be visible, as the last petition addressed by Our Lord to his Father teaches us - "ut unum sint, ut credat mundus" -, because this is the decisive testimony of Christ's friends........

.....With Saint Catherine of Siena, we wish to say: "Come to Rome in complete safety," next to the house of the common Father who was given to us as the visible and perpetual principle and foundation of Catholic unity......

......How not to think of the contribution you could give to the welfare of the whole Church, thanks to your pastoral and doctrinal resources, your capabilities and your sensibility?

This is the appropriate moment, the favorable time to come. Timete Dominum transeuntem: let not the occasion of grace the Lord offers you pass by, let it not pass by your side without recognizing it.

Will the Lord grant another one? Will not we all one day appear before His Court and answer not only for the evil we have done, but above all for the good we might have accomplished but did not?

The Holy Father's heart trembles: he awaits you anxiously because he loves you, because the Church needs you for a common profession of faith before a world that is each day more secularized and that seems to turn its back to its Creator and Savior hopelessly.

In the full ecclesial communion with the great family that is the Catholic Church, your voice will no longer be stifled, your contribution will be neither ignorable nor ignored, but will be able to bring forth, with that of so many others, abundant fruits which would otherwise go to waste........

........On this day dedicated to him, may Saint Joseph, spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Patron of the Universal Church, inspire and sustain your resolutions: "Come to Rome in all safety".
How else to follow something like that but with one of our favourite youtube clips, certainly provided here before, and featured as a permanent video on the right hand sidebar of this blog.

Tu es Petrus: et super hanc petram aedificabo ecclesiam meam.  Et portæ inferi non prævalebunt adversus eam: et tibi dabo claves regni cælorum. 

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