During a Summer Reception held by the Friends of the Ordinariate at the Apostolic Nunciature, Archbishop Mennini praised the achievements of the Ordinariate so far and said that he would “always support the Personal Ordinariate” as a vital part of a vision for Christian unity initiated by Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI.
Archbishop Mennini also recounted how Pope St John XXIII had addressed the people of Rome on the night of the opening day of the Second Vatican Council. He said that John XXIII had noted the bright moon in the sky that evening and had exclaimed: “Even the moon has come out to greet us!” Archbishop Mennini reflected that, likewise, God had sent the sun to greet the guests at Friends’ Summer Reception – a sign, he said, “of God’s blessing” on the Ordinariate.
During his address, Mgr Keith Newton, Ordinary of the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham, continued on the theme of the Second Vatican Council, saying that the Personal Ordinariate was “very much a fruit of the Council”. He said: “The Council taught that the Church subsists within the Catholic Church, though elements of Catholic truth may be found outside her, including within the Anglican Church”. Mgr Newton went on to say that the establishing of the Personal Ordinariates for former Anglicans was therefore a “profoundly ecumenical” step by the Holy See, in which those identifying with Catholic truth outside the full communion of Rome are able to enter into full communion with the Successor of St Peter, while also keeping much of their own traditions and patrimony. He added: “Supporters of ecumenism should be excited about the Ordinariate.”
Thanking the Nuncio for allowing the Friends of the Ordinariate to host their Summer Reception at the Nunciature, the Chairman of the Friends, Nicolas Ollivant, highlighted the many positive things achieved by the Ordinariate and assured members of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham of the Friends’ continued support. Addressing the Nuncio, he said: “We are very grateful to you for your warm hospitality in welcoming us to your home and for your continuing support for the Ordinariate.”
Among the 40 or so guests at the event were Mother Winsome of the newly erected Sisters of the Blessed Virgin Mary as well as Catholic clergy, writers, academics and lawyers, and members of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham itself.
The evening was organised by the Friends of the Ordinariate, a charity set up by Catholic laypeople to support and raise awareness of the Ordinariate. The Reception raised nearly £8000 towards the work of the Friends. To make a donation to the Friends and help the charity in its mission of supporting the Ordinariate, please visit the donate page on this website.