Thursday, June 9, 2011

'One woe doth tread upon another's heel, so fast they follow'

Hamlet's mother was speaking of the drowning of Ophelia, but the words Shakespeare gave to her describe my present feelings perfectly. Over the last week in France a man has been elevated to the episcopate who according to reliable reports does not subscribe to the teaching of the Magisterium and because of his relative youth he will be in that position for 18 years; in Scotland a senior prelate has, in a letter to his priests,  rubbished the authority of the Pope; and then to crown all this, Father Hunwicke has been informed that his ordination is 'deferred'. All this constitutes absolute nonsense. Fr Blake and 'Pastor in Valle' have registered  pained dismay on their blogs, the latter warning how damaging this development may be to the Ordinariate. Indeed he makes it clear that he knows, the Hunwicke situation has already done considerable damage.

People, particularly priests, come into the Church from outside, when they have grappled with the question of  Petrine authority. I know of no better description of that journey, that intellectual and spiritual fight,  than the one set forth by Mgr Vernon Johnson in 'One Lord, One Faith' (published between the Wars, I think)

The present state of affairs is crazy isn't it? We have bishops who do not recognise that authority, and yet a man who does recognise it is kept from ordination.

Yes, we should pray for Archbishop Conti and for Bishop Fonlupt of Rodez, but I know that I'll be spending more time tonight, praying for Fr Hunwicke.


shadowlands said...

St. Therese of Lisieux inspired Mgr Vernon Johnson. Perhaps invoke her prayers for Fr Hunwicke?

Jane said...


Most certainly I do.Thanks for underlining this.

One of these days, I'll find time to post about how important she has been in my own journey.


Genty said...

Fr Hunwicke, a man of intellect and priestly integrity; his like so much needed in the Catholic Church. So it figures that obstacles would be put in his way.

It is a terrible thing to have to admit that this turn of events is entirely predictable.

It is a privilege to pray for this good man. Even more earnestly will I pray for those who would deny him.

motuproprio said...

It is surely a sign of the immense potential of the Ordinariate that His Infernal Unholiness is getting up to his usual tricks. May Fr Hunwicke be defended by the Holy Archangel Michael, sustained by St Therese of the Child Jesus and Blessed John Henry Newman and strengthened by Our Lady of Walsingham and of Oxford.

Jane said...

Yes, I have no doubt that 'the father of lies' is up to his tricks. It's a sign not only of the potential of the Ordinariate, but of Fr Hunwicke himself. At all costs, he must be kept out. Unfortunately there must be human agents who are willing to help his evil cause. Even more unfortunate is the suspicion it raises that those agents are already within the Church.

I join with your prayers.


Annie said...

It is an absolutely mad situation isn't it? Orthodox like Fr Hunwicke you're a concern, if an openly defiant prelate, that's just fine! It would be comical if it wasn't so sad! Prayers all round.