Joanna Bogle in National Catholic Register
Joanna Bogle of Auntie Joanna Writes has a couple of interesting pieces in the January 13-19, 2008 issue of National Catholic Register:
From Polite Respect to Enthusiastic Support
LONDON — Last year’s news that the Traditional Anglican Communion is seeking “full, corporate, sacramental union” with Rome raised hopes for Christian unity.
But divisions among Anglicanism are rampant, and positions run the gamut from something akin to Catholic orthodoxy to condoning homosexual lifestyles.
Lately, there have even been Anglicans expressing their enthusiasm for Pope Benedict XVI.
“In general, what traditional Anglicans think about the Pope is that we revere him as the Patriarch of the West,” said Stephen Parkinson of Forward in Faith, the leading group in the Church of England bringing together those who do not accept women’s ordination. “We like Benedict XVI very much, indeed, and we rejoiced at his election.”
Ironically, in 2006, the Vatican formally renounced the title, Patriarch of the West.
LONDON — Britain’s former prime minister, Tony Blair, was formally received into the Catholic Church just before Christmas — after months of speculation on the subject.
What happens now? Blair had a strong pro-abortion voting record in the House of Commons and was also responsible for introducing civil unions — effectively homosexual “marriage” — into British law. He famously said he had “given a little skip of joy” when marriage was redefined in Britain.
Blair also forced all adoption agencies to give children to homosexual couples — a move that almost certainly means that Catholic adoption agencies in Britain will have to close. They were given two years to comply with the law, and are still consulting with legal experts to see if there is any way in which they can still maintain their services.
The matter brought a direct clash between Blair’s government and the country’s Catholic bishops.
A request for a comment from Blair’s office had not received a response at press time.
Catholic activists had mixed reactions to the news, but most expressed optimism.
“Just as St. Paul was persecuting Christians before his conversion, so Tony Blair has been persecuting the unborn,” said John Smeaton, director of the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children, Britain’s leading pro-life organization. “He promoted abortion not only in the United Kingdom but all over the world.
“We now want to know whether he now thinks that was wrong, and that in his new public role he will show evidence of his conversion and cease this persecution.”
The Society for the Protection of Unborn Children is writing to Blair asking for clarification about his commitment to the Church’s teaching that aborting babies is wrong.