To counterbalance the wonderful "Anglicanorum Coetibus", every so often Rome creates mountains of difficulties for us. No, not the hyped up press fulminations over alleged paedophilia. In this case I refer particularly to some pictures on the blog 'Orbis Catholicus Secundus' http://www.orbiscatholicus.org/. It begins with a Harry Potter look-alike modelling the sort of hat which once we called a Cure or poached-egg hat.
As if that is not bad enough it continues with diverse bishops and canons. Now I KNOW we often manage to look pretty stupid in church in the C of E, but even the Bishop of Ebbsfleet in all his glory is seldom arrayed like some of these. I begin to understand how Martin Luther felt when he visited Rome the first time. It is all so terribly OTT.
We are assured that come the Ordinariate, former Anglican Bishops may seek permission to wear episcopal insignia. What a dilemma! Do we try to look modest and simply not ask for this permission? And if we DO ask, what are the insignia we are expected to adopt? Are they part of our Anglican Patrimony, lawn sleeves, scarlet chimeres and all? Shall we be condemned to wearing purple shirts because they are peculiarly Anglican? Must we wear our pectoral cross tucked into our waistcoat pocket, or draped over our ample stomachs (either is a favoured Anglican habit) rather than carrying them high on our chest, as the name implies we should? Is our episcopal ring to be a socking great Anglican amethyst, or a Roman gold plate inscribed with the arms of our (no longer) diocese? And why were amethysts given up anyway? The name means "not drunken". Perhaps the reference to I Timothy 3.2 is avoided by Rome, not because it says the bishop should be temperate and soberminded, but because he is to be the husband of one wife?
Oh dear; perhaps all this is sent to test our resolve. So that our transatlantic brothers might be aware of the problems, I have also blogged about this on 'The Anglo Catholic' - if you can bear to read any more in this vein.
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