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Archive for the ‘priests’ Category

Mgr Graham Leonard RIP

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Mgr Graham Leonard, the former Anglican Bishop of London, who was received into the Catholic Church in 1994, has died.

My colleague, Damian Thompson, comments:

Mgr Leonard, 87, was a formidable and dignified champion of the Anglo-Catholic cause in the Church of England; when he converted to Catholicism after the vote to ordain women priests, he was ordained priest conditionally, having persuaded the Vatican that he might already possess valid orders by virtue of an Old Catholic apostolic succession.

Mgr Leonard had originally hoped that he could bring with him Anglican priests and faithful who could worship together after their reception; as it turned out, the time was not yet ripe. But it is now. The Ordinariate scheme, currently taking shape, will be a fitting memorial to this inspiring priest.

I was once had the privilege of hearing him preach. His homily sounded like something Newman might have preached: it was literate, beautiful and deeply theological. He will be missed.


Written by Luke Coppen

January 6, 2010 at 1:30 pm

What’s in The Catholic Herald this week

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In this week’s paper we report on the clash between Harriet Harman and the bishops of England and Wales over the Equality Bill, the installation of the popular new Archbishop of Birmingham and Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor’s decision to reject a seat in the House of Lords.

We also interview the son of St Gianna Beretta Molla, publish a robust defence of Anglo-Catholic “patrimony” and present a forceful appeal for a sharper divide between the roles of clergy and lay people.

This is just a hint of what’s in the paper. To get the whole story, you may like to pick up a copy (at the back of churches in Britain and Ireland) or subscribe.

This morning’s Catholic must-reads

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Here are a few interesting news reports and comment pieces to start the day:

Mgr Andrew Faley says incoming Anglicans must not become a “sect” within the Catholic Church.

Senior Irish Church leaders prepare to discuss child abuse with Pope Benedict XVI later today.

The head of the Holy See’s delegation in Copenhagen explains what he hopes the summit will achieve.

The Vatican confirms the programme of Pope Benedict XVI’s May trip to Fatima.

Talks between Israel and the Holy See have reportedly hit another dead end.

Archbishop Chaput explains why he signed the Manhattan Declaration.

Matthew Milliner names the theological book of the decade.

Rod Dreher discovers what St Nicholas really looked like.

And Zenit wonders if cuddly toys might be the solution to the priestly vocations crisis.

Vatican official notes growth in priestly vocations

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Twenty countries, including England and Wales, have seen an increase in the number of seminarians, a Vatican official has said.

Mgr Francis Bonnici, director of the Pontifical Pastoral Ministry for Priestly Vocations, disclosed the information – based on an international vocations survey carried out in 2007 – at the recent English and Welsh Vocations Directors’ Conference held at the English College Villa in Palazzola, Rome.

The National Office for Vocation reports:

Provisional statistics indicate that the number of men commencing seminary formation in September 2009 for the dioceses of England and Wales was in the 40s (these statistics will be published in the Spring of 2010).

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Written by Luke Coppen

November 3, 2009 at 12:01 pm