Fr. Shawn P. Tunink

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Can I Be Anglican?

July 5th, 2012, by Fr. Shawn P. Tunink

Don’t panic. I’m not thinking about becoming Anglican and getting married and then converting back to Catholicism. N.B. That’s against Canon Law and doesn’t work. However, the possibility of converting to Anglicanism and then converting back to Catholicism became a little more enticing today for a different reason.

As you may know, Pope Benedict has recently created a process by which Anglicans can become Catholics and keep their liturgy and other practices that are important to their heritage. It’s called the Anglican Ordinariate and you can Google it for more info. Well…today the Holy See approved some of the “new” liturgical books that the “Anglican Catholics” will get to use. Basically, it’s the Book of Common Prayer as a basis. In addition to the beautiful English texts which our Anglican Catholic brothers and sisters now get to use, they were also allowed to use “their” calendar. See the full article here, but this paragraph caught my eye:

The Holy See has already approved a liturgical calendar for the ordinariates that includes Sundays after Epiphany and Trinity Sunday (rather than Sundays of Ordinary Time), Septuagesima, Sexagesima, and Quinquagesima Sundays (before Lent), the Pentecost Octave, and Rogation and Ember Days. The use of the Revised Standard Version lectionary is permitted during Mass.

Now forgive me if I and all other liturgical geeks (that’s at least a dozen people) let out a collective “Hey, wait a minute!” For those not familiar with the history of liturgical changes made after Vatican II, one of the very sad things that happened was that the liturgical calendar was severely altered, leaving most liturgical geeks still in mourning (that would be at least 7 people). Now all of the sudden the Anglican Catholics get to use “our” traditional calendar because it’s their “heritage?” Let them have their married priests, but this is no fair.

Why can’t I use the Catholic->Anglican->Catholic calendar? (E.F. I know…I want English) If the Holy See allows this exception for one group, what’s next? Pretty soon they’ll be letting the Anglican Catholics celebrate Ascension Thursday on Thursday.

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