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The final result was the Bull “Apostolicae Curae”, in which Anglican orders were declared to be invalid. As the Bull itself explains at length, its decision rests on. APOSTOLICAE CURAE. Pope Leo XIII. Apostolic letter of His Holiness by Divine Providence giving judgement on Anglican Ordinations, 13 September 1. Apostolicae curae et caritatis, qua Pastorem magnum ovium, Dominum nostrum Iesum Christum (Hebr. XIII, 20), referre pro munere et imitari, aspirante eius.

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In vain those who, from the time of Charles I, have attempted to hold some kind of sacrifice or of priesthood, have made additions to the Ordinal. It is pleasing to acknowledge the generous way in which Our zeal and plainness aoostolicae speech, inspired by no mere human motives, have met the approval of the English people, and this testifies not less to curas courtesy than to the solicitude of many for their eternal salvation.

Leo XIII Judgement on Anglican Ordinations

But if, on the contrary, the rite is changed with the manifest purpose of introducing another rite which is not accepted by the Church, and of repudiating that which the Church does and which is something that by Christ’s institution belongs to the nature of the sacrament, then it is evident, not merely that the intention necessary for a sacrament is lacking, but rather that an intention is present which is adverse to and incompatible with the sacrament.

In vain also has been the contention of that small section of the Anglican body formed in recent times that the said Ordinal can be understood and interpreted in a sound and orthodox sense. Hoc ducendae rei ordine praestituto, ad intimam tamen aestimationem causae aequum erat non ante aggredi, quam id perstudiose quaesitum apparuisset, quo loco ea iam esset secundum Apostolicae Sedis praescriptiones institutamque consuetudinem; cuius consuetudinis et initia et vim magni profecto intererat reputare.

The Bull concludes with the usual declaration of the authority of this Apostolic letter. Omission of good elements is not enough.

For this reason, in the whole Ordinal not only is there no clear mention of the sacrifice, of consecration, of the priesthood sacerdotiumand 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. This is because the application of general principles to particular historical cases is intrinsically inerrant only insofar as the understanding of those cases is inerrant.

The California Network Inspiring streaming service. Therefore, if it can be shown that the Church of England did not intend to stop ordaining priests and bishops of the Catholic Church to perform the ministrations proper to these orders, including Eucharistic sacrifice, then the conclusion of A.

And now, taking into consideration the fact that this matter, although it had already been duly settled, has by certain persons for one reason or another been called again in question, and that not a few may in consequence be led cjrae the dangerous error of thinking themselves to find the sacrament of Order and its aposyolicae where in fact they do not exist, We have resolved in the Lord to pronounce Our judgement.

For this purpose, all the necessary written evidence and the pertinent parts of the new Ordinal were submitted to the Pope. Anglican resentment began to abate. These consecrations occurred after the Caroline Divines had strengthened the doctrines of Eucharistic Sacrifice and Holy Orders in the Church of England.


But it observes that this rather shows that the Spostolicae themselves perceived that the first form was defective and inadequate. All know that the Apostolicas of the New Law, as sensible and efficient signs of invisible grace, ought both to signify the grace which they effect, and effect the grace which they signify.

Apostolicae Curae

And in order that the judgement on this form might be as complete and certain as possible, care had been taken to have a copy of the Anglican Ordinal available, and a comparison was made between this and the forms of ordination taken from various Eastern and Western rites. It is impossible, therefore, for a form to be suitable or sufficient for a sacrament if it suppresses that which it ought distinctively to signify. Such efforts, we affirm, have been, and are, made in vain, and for this reason, that any words in the Anglican Ordinal, as it now is, which lend themselves to ambiguity, cannot be taken in the same sense as they possess in the Catholic rite.

Having established that the form of ordination in the Ordinal is defective, the pope argues from the axiom lex credendi lex supplicandi that the Anglican liturgy of ordination betrays a basic theology of Orders that is not compatible with the Catholic view of the sacrament.

A Critique of Apostolicae Curae

Wherefore, strictly adhering, in this matter, to the decrees of the pontiffs, our predecessors, and confirming them most fully, and, as it were, renewing them by our authority, of our own initiative and certain knowledge, we pronounce and declare that ordinations carried out according to the Anglican rite have been, and are, absolutely null and utterly void. Quod enim apud Anglos, aliquanto postquam ab unitatis christianae centro abscessum est, novus plane ritus ordinibus sacris conferendis, sub rege Eduardo VI, fuit publice inductus; defecisse idcirco verum Ordinis sacramentum, quale Christus instituit, simulque hierarchicam successionem, iam tenuit communis sententia, quam non semel Ecclesiae acta et constans disciplina firmarunt.

The Bull points out that orders received in the Church of Englandaccording to the change introduced into the Ritual under Edward VI, were disowned as invalid by the Catholic Church, not through a custom grown up gradually, but from the date of that change in the Ritual.

Nam certe definiteque notatur, ut reapse erat, duplex hominum classis: The editor of New Advent is Kevin Knight. For example, in excommunicating a heretic and anathematising his purported heresy, it is generally acknowledged that it is possible for even an Ecumenical Council to err in ascribing the said heresy to the person involved, through misinterpretation or misreporting of his words or intent.

Hence, the answer to the third question would be yes with respect to this deficiency. It is moreover Our intention that copies of this Letter, even printed copies, provided they are signed by a Notary and sealed by a person constituted in ecclesiastical dignity, shall be accorded the same faith as would be given to the expression of Our will by the showing of these presents.

It thus becomes quite obvious that the controversy which has been recently revived had already long ago been settled by the judgement of the Apostolic See; and the fact that one or two Catholic writers should have ventured to treat it as an open question is perhaps due to lack of sufficient knowledge of the aforesaid documents.

On the other hand, if the rite be changed, with the manifest intention of introducing another rite not approved by the Church and of rejecting what the Church does, and what, by the institution of Christ, belongs to the nature of the Sacrament, then it is clear that not only is the necessary intention wanting to the Sacrament, but that the intention is adverse to and destructive of the Sacrament.


But this has been necessary for two reasons. May the God of peace, the God of all consolation, in His infinite tenderness, enrich and fill with all these blessings those who truly yearn for them. Ex hac vero virtute dici vix potest quae ipsos laus maneat in coetibus fratrum per catholicum orbem, quae aliquando spes et fiducia ante Christum iudicem, quae ab illo praemia in regno caelesti!

Retrieved 12 July By this expression those only could be meant who had been consecrated according to the Edwardine rite, since besides it and the Catholic form there was then no other in England. In the same spirit and with the same end in view We have resolved now to turn Our attention to an equally important matter which is connected with the aforesaid subject and with Our own hopes. Moreover it is well known that the sacraments of the New Law, being sensible signs which cause invisible grace, must both signify the grace which they cause and cause the grace which they signify.

Apostolicae curae – Wikipedia

Need for due signification in a sacramental rite Consultumque a Nobis est, ut ipsi diplomata opportuna omni possent copia in tabulariis vaticanis sive nota recognoscere, sive inexplorata educere; itemque ut apostoliace haberent quaecumque eiusdem generis acta apud sacrum Consilium, quod Supremovocatur, asservarentur, neque minus quaecumque ad hoc tempus doctiores viri in utramque partem evulgassent.

In this, whilst giving full force and approbation to what Pole had done, it is ordered in the matter of the Ordinations as follows: From them has been deliberately removed whatever sets forth the dignity and office of the priesthood in apostollicae Catholic rite.

Instead, they use two dissimilar parts of the New Testament: The intrinsic reason for which Anglican Orders are pronounced invalid by the Bull, is the “defect of form and intention “. We ordered them, when prepared in this way, to meet together in special sessions. William MaclaganArchbishop of York. The extrinsic grounds were said to be in the fact of the implicit approval of the Holy See given to the constant practice of unconditionally ordaining former Anglican priests who desired to be priests in the Roman Catholic Church and, also, in the explicit declarations of the Holy See as to the invalidity of Anglican orders on every occasion when its decision was given.

May they return to the apostolixae fold of Christ! And we, not disregarding such desires and opinions, above all, obeying the dictates of apostolic charity, have considered that nothing should be left untried that might in any way tend to preserve souls from injury or procure their advantage. He then declared that ordinations conducted with the Anglican rite were “null and void”, and implored those apoztolicae were not Roman Catholic and who wanted orders to return to the one sheepfold of Christ where they would find the true aids for salvation.

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