Our friends over at the virulently anti-catholic theTrumpet.com are hysterical over the proposed unity of several hundred thousand traditional Anglicans with the Church of Rome. We have reported before about how the Trumpet is convinced that these overtures are undeniable signs of the apocalypse. Now that the Traditional Anglican Communion (TAC) has asked for unity, their alarm grows.
Apparently they are convinced that for Anglicans to go Roman is for the UK to cede any and all sovereignty to the Pope. With such power, the Pope will in no time be deciding the placement of stop signs and laying out double-decker bus routes in London.
Historically, England has been distinct from mainland Europe in a number of ways besides just the geographic separation provided by the English Channel. One of the most crucial, in terms of establishing and maintaining British sovereignty and independence, has been the existence of the Church of England. From the time of England’s break from Rome in the 16th century, the British monarch has been the titular head of the church, heading an ecclesiastical structure entirely separate from the pope-centered Roman Catholicism that has dominated continental history…
he present queen, when she was crowned in 1953, swore an oath “to maintain in the United Kingdom the Protestant Reformed religion established by law.” Upholding this oath factors heavily in Britain’s independence from Europe because, since the pope claims authority over all Roman Catholics, a Catholic British monarch would owe primary allegiance to Rome over and above that owed the British crown.
[Cue evil laugh!]
And Rome would like nothing more. [End Evil Laugh!]
After lamenting the possible rescinding of the Act of Settlement which prevents any Prime Minister from being Catholic they say:
In other words, the historic fortifications safeguarding Britain’s national strength and sovereignty have been significantly compromised. What is left in this nation is a spiritual vacuum—a vacuum that [Cue dramatic music!]provides the Church of Rome the perfect opportunity to move in.[End Dramatic music!] For as Britain has become more liberal, Roman Catholicism has grown more conservative, increasingly presenting itself as a rock of stability in an uncertain world. [Presenting itself as the rock or proving itself?]
After praising the Archbishop of Canterbury’s powerlessness as a virtue they express shock that the Traditional Anglican Communion (TAC) would consider uniting with authoritarian Rome.
Authority within the Roman Catholic Church, by stark contrast, emanates from one man, traditionally called “the Vicar of Christ,” the one and only “Successor of the Prince of the Apostles”—the pope.
The TAC is willing to swallow that pill. Archbishop Hepworth says, “Unity with Peter is a biblical imperative,” referring to the pope’s claim to be the rightful successor to the Apostle Peter. “What is important, and we are having to learn as a community,” he says, “is to ask not what we think, but what the church says, and five centuries of bad habits are going to die hard.”
Boy! That Pope rules with an iron fist. Maybe one day he might actually get the bishops to listen to him. The Trumpet continues:
The significance of this event is destined to grow with time. The tac, though now separate from the Anglican Communion, appears to be in the vanguard of a movement among many Anglicans who view the liberalization in the church as heading in the opposite direction from where they want to go. The Anglo-Catholicism that found earlier expression in the present queen’s overtures to a former pope is coming into fuller and fuller flower.
This extraordinary move puts the Vatican in the position not of converting people through force, as it often has in the past, but of coolly arbitrating and deciding upon the precise terms by which this half a million souls may consider themselves officially part of the world’s largest organized religious body.
What?!? The Church converts people not through force but through peaceful acknowledgment of the stability of the Church and assent to truth? The bastards!
November 28, 2007 at 2:52 pm
The author is clearly trying to have it both ways. It’s a rather brilliant turn of phrase in the last quoted paragraph. Before the Church “convert[ed] people through force” so they’re evil. Now they’re converting people through peace and fulfilling God’s command, and therefore they’re evil. Hey, lookie – we got them both ways! Sad, really…