From Apostolicae Curae, On the Nullity of Anglican Orders, Pope Leo XIII - September 15, 1896
- For the full and accurate understanding of the Anglican Ordinal, besides what we have noted as to some of its parts, there is nothing more pertinent than to consider carefully the circumstances under which it was composed and publicly authorized. It would be tedious to enter into details, nor is it necessary to do so, as the history of that time is sufficiently eloquent as to the animus of the authors of the Ordinal against the Catholic Church; as to the abettors whom they associated with themselves from the heterodox sects; and as to the end they had in view. Being fully cognizant of the necessary connection between faith and worship, between “the law of believing and the law of praying”, under a pretext of returning to the primitive form, they corrupted the Liturgical Order in many ways to suit the errors of the reformers. For this reason, in the whole Ordinal not only is there no clear mention of the sacrifice, of consecration, of the priesthood (sacerdotium), and of the power of consecrating and offering sacrifice but, as we have just stated, every trace of these things which had been in such prayers of the Catholic rite as they had not entirely rejected, was deliberately removed and struck out.
Does it bother anyone that the official Vatican website does not include the above Papal Bull, in any language? Almost all of the other Leo XIII encyclicals appear to be there…but this one has been omitted. A Papal Bull is a weighty document, an Ex cathedra pronouncement. Does this Bull, declaring the nullity of Anglican Orders, conflict with today’s ecumenism?