Saturday, June 30, 2012

ARCHIVE: New clerics receive First Tonsure and ordination to the Minor Orders

MOBILE 30 June 2012 (ACNS) - Two new clerics received the First Tonsure and were ordained to the Minor Orders on the Commemoration of Saint Paul the Apostle. Mr. Shane VanMeveren of South Dakota recieved the orders of Porter, Lector, Exorcist, Acolyte, and Sub-Deacon. Mr. Brett Merlina of Florida received the orders of Porter and Lector. Both are seminarians currently in formation for the priesthood. The officiant was Cardinal Johnson, Patriarch of the Anglican Rite Roman Catholic Church. His Eminence was assisted by Archbishop Harris Rowzie, Archbishop of the Southeast. The ordination rite took place at the Church of the Redeemer in Mobile, Alabama.

The rites used derive from ancient traditions, and their specific form is special to the usage of this communion. It is through the First Tonsure that men are admitted as clerics and thus become part of the Church hierarchy. The newly-tonsured clerics are invested with the surplice with the words "May the Lord clothe thee with the new man, who is created according to God in justice and true holiness."

Both new clerics were then ordained as Porters. During this rite, the ordinand touches the keys of the church, symbolic of the traditional duty of Porters to help take care of the physical property and security of the church grounds. After the ordination, Archbishop Rowzie led the new Porters to open and close the church doors and then ring the church bell.

Next followed the ordination to the order of Lector, during which the two ordinands touched a book containing the Lessons. This symbolizes the duty of a Lector to read the lessons in public worship. During the ordination to exorcist, the ordinand touched a book containing the rites of exorcism. Next, during his ordination as Acolyte, the candidate held an unlit candle and an empty cruet as symbols of his office.

Prior to the ordination to the Sub-Diaconate, the surplice was removed from Mr. VanMeveren and he was invested with the amice as a symbol of moderation in speech. He then retired to the sacristy to vest in the alb. After his presentation to the Patriarch as a candidate for the Sub-Diaconate by Archbishop Rowzie and the subsequent interrogation, Mr. VanMeveren prostrated before the altar during the singing of the Litany of the Saints. He was then ordained Sub-Deacon by the laying on of hands and invested with the maniple and tunicle, the vestments proper to his office. Lastly, he was presented with the Book of Epistles, symbolizing his authority and duty to sing the Epistles during high mass. After the benediction and the charge to the new clerics, the new Sub-Deacon touched the chalice and the paten, which were held by the Patriarch, as a symbol of the new ministry entrusted to him. Archbishop Rowzie then held in turn two cruets, one filled with wine and one with water, and then the lavabo basin and towel, for the new Sub-Deacon to touch as further symbols of his new ministry.

Update: Since this article, Harris Rowzie and Brett Merlina are no longer affiliated with the Anglican Rite Roman Catholic Church.  In subsequent tribunal proceedings, Harris Rowzie was deposed, excommunicated, and degraded to the lay state. Property of the Patriarchal See in his custody was not returned as requested.

The candidates are presented wearing clerical
habit, with the surplice folded over the left arm,
and holding a candle in the right hand.
Mr. Merlina opens and closes
the church doors after being
ordained Porter.

Mr. VanMeveren rings the church bell
after having earlier opened and closed
the church doors after his ordination
to the order of Porter.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

ARCHIVES (2012) - Patriarch excommunicates five Supreme Court Justices

WASHINGTON 28 June 2012 (ACNS) - In response to their five to four vote to uphold Obamacare as constitutional, the Patriarch of St. Stephen issued a bull of excommunication today for the five Justices who voted in favor of the legislation. The complete text of the bull is given below:

Lex Christi - The Law of Christ is supreme. It has ultimate and supreme authority over all, whether Christian or not. It is in all cases superior to the laws of secular governments, and the laws of secular governments are only legitimate if they are consistent with the Law of Christ. The Holy Church, by Divine authority, exists to uphold this law for the freedom and salvation of all mankind, for true freedom and salvation can only come through Christ. The Supreme Court of the United States has, in upholding the health care legislation of the Obama Administration, committed an act against the sanctity of life and in favor of intrinsic evil, which includes but is not limited to the facilitation of the murder of unborn children. As they are the supreme secular legal authority of the United States, they bear an awesome responsibility. It was in their power to act in accordance with the overarching moral principles, but they chose not to do so. Therefore, We, acting in Our Sacred Office as Patriarch, do hereby excommunicate John Roberts, Stephen Breyer, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan, reserved to this See. We further declare that all baptized persons in the United States of America who give direct or moral support to the legislation of the Obama Administration today upheld by the Supreme Court shall incur latae sententiae excommunication reserved to this See. Datum Aulae S. Mariae Walsinghamensis apud S. Stefanum, die xxviii mensis Junii A.D. xxii.

Encyclical on the Supreme Court Health Care Ruling


Encyclical regarding the Supreme Court Decision on Health Care

To the Bishops, Regular Clergy, and the Faithful of the Anglican Rite Roman Catholic Church, greetings and Apostolic blessings.

1. Of the sanctity of human life there can be no question. While society has grown in many ways, recent periods in some ways demonstrate a great lack of growth with regard to the sanctity of life. Secularization of society and a general malaise regarding religion, accompanied by great squabbling and disharmony within Christ's Church have made it all the more difficult for people to life a God-centered life according to Sacred Scripture and the norms, customs, devotions, and traditions of the Church.
2. On this day the Supreme Court of the United States of America voted five to four to uphold the Constitutionality of the recent health care legislation instituted by the President. As the Supreme Court has chosen not to uphold life and freedom guaranteed under Christ, it is essential that We comment on this matter.
3. We congratulate the Justices of the Supreme Court who voted against this legislation.
4. Legislation that requires persons and institutions to purchase health care has been held Constitutional, yet due to its provisions, it is inherently incompatible with the Laws of Christ and intrinsically evil. With evil there may be no compromise.
5. Christians may be forced under this new law to pay for contraceptives and abortions of others. The Supreme Court has chosen to uphold the culture of death. As We have said in general in the period leading up to this historic vote, the "individual mandate" places many devout Christians in the position of having to chose between violating their consciences and suffering legal penalties.
6. Neither the Supreme Court nor the President of the United States is above the Laws of Christ or of His Holy Church. Temporal governments and their authorities are only just insofar as they are consistent with the Laws of Christ. If they are not consistent, then Christians are not bound by them. We therefore call upon all Christians to oppose and disobey this legislation to the best of their abilities.
7. We pray for all who have been placed in difficult positions due to this Supreme Court decision and the legislation. We are reminded of Saint Lawrence and our glorious Patron Saint Stephen, and all the martyrs who stood firm against the evils of the world, even though it cost them their lives. We are reminded of the strength of the Confessors who devoted their lives to promoting the Truth of Christ under whom the only real justice exists. From them we draw strength in this present fight. This fight is not political, it is spiritual. It is a fight in which there may be no compromise.

Rutherford Card. Johnson
Patriarch of the Anglican Rite Roman Catholic Church
Given at the Court of Saint Mary of Walsingham
on the Feast of Saint Irenaeus, Bishop and Martyr
28 June A.D. 2012.