Here's a curiosity for the cognoscenti. On the Ordinariate Calendar, today is the feast of S Magnus the Martyr, of Orkney. Is he there
(1) to show that the British Ordinariate includes even the Northern Islands of the Kingdom of Scotland; or
(2) because of the fact that Fr Henry Joy Fynes Clinton, for decades the undisputed leader of the Papalist Party in the Church of England, was Rector of S Magnus the Martyr, London Bridge?
In either case, both the fact and the reason are excellent!
When the Ordinariates were erected, I did think how lovely an ecumenical gesture it would be if the Diocese of London had lent S Magnus's to us. But the C of E is not really ecumenical except in the formal sense of asserting that it is; and playing the daft games epitomised by the expensive white elephant called ARCIC. It is rumoured that one official in that diocese said that he would rather see a Church bulldozed than getting into the hands of the Ordinariate! Nice lot! Happily, in an act of real generosity and genuine Catholic Ecumenism, the Diocese of Westminster assigned us the wonderful historic Church of the Assumption and S Gregory in central London, which, among its battle honours, proudly claims to have been sacked during the Gordon Riots. I have no difficulty discerning there the approving spirit of that superbly combative old ecumenist, Fr FC. Additionally, as all sound chaps and chappesses know, it was once the Bavarian Embassy Chapel and contains the beautiful Flag of the House of Wittelsbach. Vivat Rex!
BUT ... for me, if I may become personal, the Feast of S Magnus sings most joyously in my heart because of my memory of an amazing visit to my dear friends, the Redemptorists of Papa Stronsay. They showed me round the Cathedral of S Magnus in Kirkwall, exquisite Romanesque in beautiful pink stone, and still housing the relics of S Magnus. And this enables me to complete the circle by returning to Pope Benedict XVI, in whose happy pontificate, of course, the Redemptorists of Papa Stronsay were able to regularise their canonical relationship with the Holy See. Another splendid act of true, Catholic, Ecumenism!! May they continue to flourish and to give such a wonderful witness of prayer, work, and common life to the Catholic World!
As for Benedict XVI, the Pope of Ecumenism ... Eis polla ete, Despota!
I think this Post exceeds my usual daily allowance of sincere hyperbole ... Megamarvellous!!