Wednesday, November 2, 2016
DO RANK AND FILE CLERGY AND LAITY IN THE VARIETY OF DENOMINATIONS OF CHRISTIANITY REALLY WANT PRACTICAL CHRISTIAN INTER-COMMUNION AND ECUMENISM?
Pope Francis was quick, very, very quick to disavow women priest ever, and I mean forever, just moments after celebrating the Reformation with female ministers of the Lutheran Communion. Why? Because His Holiness damn well knows that if the Roman Catholic Church ever ordained women, our sacramental system would be as null and void as those of the Protestants and High Anglicans. We would be like them and less like the Eastern Orthodox who have a valid priesthood and Sacramental System--they would then be the true Church because of the See of Peter went heretical and schismatic. Currently, the best chance for formal intercommunion exists with the Orthodox because we are on the same page when it comes to Holy Orders. That does not exist in Protestantism.
But do rank and file Christians really want practical inter-communion in the highly competitive world of Protestantism?
And in Eastern Orthodoxy, whose congregations in this country are rather small, do they want their members to think it doesn't matter if they receive Holy Communion in a Catholic Church or not?
No one wants to lose members or close their doors because they've been amalgamated in a larger denomination because there are supposedly no differences. It is bad for business.
For example, let's say that the Catholic Church went the route of Pope Benedict's vision of Christian Unity and allowed for Lutherans and Presbyterians a sort of Anglican Ordinariate already allowed Anglicans. In Richmond Hill, Georgia, there are tiny congregations of Episcopalians, Presbyterians and Lutherans. As far as I can tell the rector and congregation of St. Elizabeth's Episcopal Church has no interest in joining the Catholic Church. If they did, they would be amalgamated into St. Anne Catholic Church because there would be no reason for a big Catholic Church and a small Catholic Church on the same street even if they had their own Ordinariate Liturgy. They don't want to join St. Anne Church, they are congregational, they want to be Episcopal and they, as a small congregation, don't want to lose members to us if we allowed intercommunion without addressing the invalidity of their Sacramental system due to invalid Holy Orders.
The same could be said of our Lutheran and Presbyterian tiny congregations. We have no Greek Orthodox in Richmond Hill, but if there was one they would want to guard against their members coming to the Catholic Church to receive Holy Communion at a liturgy that is far shorter than theirs.
So ecumenism that Pope Francis promotes is still more of the same tea and crumpet type. Come together for Thanksgiving and pray together. Have a nice reception, pat yourself on the back and work together as a non-governmental agency to help the poor. All nice things, but even non believers do these sorts of things for philanthropic and social purposes. People generally like getting along with each other and doing things together as long as it doesn't impinge upon their businesses.