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Anglicanorum Coetibus "could present challenges for Anglicans and Catholics"

2010-05-21

The delegation which included the Bishop of Richborough Keith Newton, have expressed their interest in the apostolic constitution, “Anglicanorum Coetibus”, which would allow groups of Anglicans to enter the Catholic Church.

Their visit comes on the heels of a conference that addressed challenges, expectations and misconceptions with the document.

According to Dr. Norman Doe one of the biggest misconceptions has to do with what it will mean to join the Catholic Church.

Dr. Norman Doe
Professor, and Director of the Center for Law and Religion (Cardiff University)

“Many Anglicans think they will continue to be Anglicans in the Catholic Church and the constitution is absolutely clear, that is not the case.”

In fact, even though groups of former Anglicans will be able to retain many of their practices, they’ll be considered Catholic by name.

Just how many groups are seeking communion is unknown. But according to published reports, at least 100 parishes in the U.S., 20 in the UK and 16 in Australia have decided to join the Catholic Church.

Dr. Norman Doe
Professor, and Director of the Center for Law and Religion (Cardiff University)

“But one of the responses is that religious leaders and Anglicanism don’t actually see a groundswell of big mass exodus they do not anticipate that.”

Big or small, the exodus is and will continue to raise a sea of questions as the process moves forward. Such as what will happen to parishes used by former Anglicans? Who will have copyrights over the liturgy books used in the ordinariates?

Dr. Norman Doe
Professor, and Director of the Center for Law and Religion (Cardiff University)

“There are a host of legal obstacles if you like that people have to identify and that hasn’t happened yet. And that’s something important something we have to worked on to see the obstacles.”

Meanwhile, the Anglican bishops are not discussing the details of their meeting and will not comment on who they met with from the Vatican.

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