Benedict XVI is welcoming the progress of the ordinariates he established in 2009 for Anglicans seeking full communion with the Catholic Church.
According to a report in the UK Catholic Herald, the Pope Emeritus has affirmed his gladness at the growth of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham.
His comments came in a note replying to a letter from Nicolas Ollivant, chairman of the Friends of the Ordinariate.
Ollivant’s letter to Benedict XVI explained that the church for the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham has been established on the site of the historic Bavarian embassy chapel in London.
The Pope Emeritus is a native of Bavaria.
“Your thanks for the establishment of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham has greatly moved me, and I ask you to convey my thanks to all its members,” the Pope Emeritus wrote. “Naturally, I am particularly glad that the former Bavarian Chapel has now become your Ordinariate’s church, and serves such an important role in the whole Church of God. It has been a long time since I have heard news of this holy place, and it was therefore with all the more interest and gratitude that I read the description with which you accompanied your letter. Once more, many thanks, and may God bless you all.”
The Catholic Herald explained that Our Lady of the Assumption and St Gregory’s in Warwick Street is situated where the Bavarian embassy chapel, which was pillaged during the anti-Catholic Gordon Riots in 1780, once stood.
Benedict XVI established the ordinariates almost exactly five years ago, with the Nov. 4, 2009, apostolic constitution, Anglicanorum Coetibus.
There are now three personal ordinariates: one in the UK, established in 2011, another in the US/Canada and a third in Oceania. The latter two were established in 2012.