Faith - Anglicans

I posted on my facebook the article about a Bishop of the Anglican Church coming into the Catholic church as a layperson. One person wrote:

“May I point out that this is a person who was once at one with his old beliefs. How strong is his faith do you think? If he could abandon his old faith in such a manner, how strong was it to begin with. Its especially telling since he was a bishop in his old faith. Someone whose faith should have been strong.”

This led me to think about faith - how important is it really to have faith that your own church is right? For this man to not have ‘faith’ in his church, which I believe had misguided beliefs, isn’t bad in MY opinion, it’s a good thing. But is faith even the right word here?

How would you respond to this? Thanks :thumbsup:

(P.S. I don’t know if this is the right forum but I didn’t know where to post)

If the Catholic Church is as right as we hold it to be, then his abandoning his old way is not something to be considered shameful, as your respondant would claim. Instead you should project this as an act by which God brought glory to Himself. Here is a man who, by all rights and measures, was a bastion of his church… and yet God overcame his natural human resistance to bring him to truth, even if it cost him his “bishopry”.

It’d be one thing if the man was an anglican “priest” and gave it up to become a Catholic Bishop, but this is the opposite. The man’s beliefs had to be overcome. Furthermore he had to be so convinced of catholic truth that he surrendered a vast amount of power and influence in order to join the church. That is the power of God working in truth, smashing all opposition and human inclination to turn away and cling to our own tenuous positions!

One has Faith in Christ, who leads them to truth, where ever that truth is found. Have him read the story of Cardinal Newman and his conversion.

A bishop of the Anglican Church cannot automatically come into the Catholic Church as a Catholic Bishop, they have to be ordained, meaning they have to come into the Church as a lay person anyway.

BENEDICT XVI
APOSTOLIC CONSTITUTION ANGLICANORUM COETIBUS
PROVIDING FOR PERSONAL ORDINARIATES FOR ANGLICANS
ENTERING INTO FULL COMMUNION
WITH THE CATHOLIC CHURCH

[LEFT]You gave no details about this former Anglican bishop, maybe he just wants to retire as a Catholic layman, but he can still be a bishop if he wants to. [/LEFT]

i would answer that his FAITH led him to understand that the Catholic church had the fullness of Salvation…
his very education and training as a Bishop led him to understand that the Catholic church was more in keeping with his understanding of God’s church than his Anglican Church was.

he saw error… and as is his duty as a priest (and bishop) he moved to correct it. being unable to correct it in the Anglican church (it being part and parcel with the schism from Rome), he left.

i was Episcopalian. LOTS of us have left as the church we used to belong to has gone further and further away from Christ’s word…
it left us.

His faith very well could have been very strong. We don’t know if it was or not. I am sure that many converts to the Catholic faith had strong faith in Protestantism or whatever their faith (or lack thereof) was before they became Catholic. All it takes is knowing what the Truth is in order for that once strong faith to be weakened and then to be strengthened into a new faith of the Catholic kind. :wink:

All good, thanks! What Holly wrote especially helped my thought process :smiley:

Glad to hear that I was of help! :smiley:

It’s obvious this person has very little contact with or understanding of Anglicanism. Paul Richardson was always an Anglo-Catholic in belief… Until recently, Anglicans of that sort were a sizeable and respected minority in the Anglican Communion. Now, not so much, and the radical changes to their Communion has caused many of them to re-evaluate just exactly what it is that makes them Anglican as opposed to Catholic and, in many cases, those individuals come to realize that they are truly Catholic at heart.

As someone who made the same journey, I would say that he is not “abandoning his old faith”, only the errors that it contained while retaining all that is good about it and expanding on it with the fullness of the Catholic Faith

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