The Catholic Bishops Conference of England and Wales have sent us the following statement this morning on the reception of a group of Anglican Bishops, religious and their families into full communion with the Catholic Church.
On 8 November 2010, five Bishops of the Church of England (three in active ministry, two in retirement) announced their intention to cease from public episcopal ministry and to resign from their pastoral responsibilities in the Church of England with effect from 31st December 2010.
Following this decision, John Broadhurst, Andrew Burnham and Keith Newton (the three former Bishops who had been in active ministry) were received together with some members of their families into full communion with the Catholic Church during Mass on 1 January 2011, in Westminster Cathedral. In addition three former Anglican Religious Sisters were also received. Out of respect for the privacy of the individuals concerned and their families, no prior public announcement of the receptions was given by the Episcopal Commission responsible for organisation of the receptions.
With the permission of the Holy See, John Broadhurst, Andrew Burnham and Keith Newton will be Ordained as Catholic Deacons in Allen Hall Seminary Chapel on Thursday 13 January 2011 at 5.30 pm. Their Ordination as Catholic Priests will take place at Westminster Cathedral on Saturday 15 January 2011 at 10.30am.
The two retired former Bishops will be received into full communion with the Catholic Church and proceed to Ordination as Catholic Priests in due course.