Saturday, April 11, 2020

Easter Greetings from the Florentine Archfather

Easter Greetings from Don Rutherford I, Florentine Archfather.


Archfather Challenges Global Leaders on Religious Freedom During Pandemic

By Jean DuBois

PATRIARCHAL SEE 11 April 2020 (ORCNS) - On Holy Saturday, His Holy Eminence the Florentine Archfather issued a ban of excommunication for "... all heads of states and government officials of any level who impose any legal restrictions upon the Church, engage in hostility against the Church, openly oppose Church sovereignty and authority, prevent the clergy from fulfilling their duties, prevent the faithful from religious participation, or impose any penalties upon the clergy or faithful for religious participation and the fulfillment of their spiritual duties." This was done so that the Church might make a public stand in favour of religious freedom around the world. Often misunderstood, such a ban, the highest penalty the Church can impose, is a pastoral tool that ultimately and sincerely seeks true repentance and reconciliation, that the peace of God might be established on earth as it is in Heaven.

The complete text of the document is provided below.

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BANNUM EXCOMMUNICATIONIS

WHEREAS the present global pandemic warrants significant attention and diligent effort both from church and state, as do all pandemics, the governments of some nations, both at the national level and at provincial and local levels, have taken measures that unquestionably have placed hundreds of millions of people, particularly the poor and vulnerable, at additional serious risks, not the least of which is the very real threat of starvation for many due to lack of daily wages. Further troubling is the complete lack of respect by the governments of some nations of the sovereignty of Holy Mother Church, the usurpation of Church authority by such civil governments, direct hostile action taken by the said governments against the hierarchy and clergy of the Church, and the denial of religious rights of countless people in many nations. We have spoken on this matter. Others have spoken on this matter. Yet, while some nations have openly embraced the role of the Church, reverencing her authority, embracing her worthy role, and respecting the religious rights of the people, nevertheless the governments of many nations have failed to respect the religious rights of their people and the sovereign and supreme authority of the Church. It is not for any civil government to dictate to the Church, to impose orders upon the clergy, or to control the fulfillment of religious obligations and religious participation on the part of the faithful. That is wholly and entirely the exclusive right of the government of the Church. We, therefore, have a duty to impose the strictest of penalties for the benefit of the faith, the Church militant here on earth, and the faithful around the world.

     By Our sovereign and universal authority under Almighty God that we possess from Rome and Florence, We, as Bishop of St. Stephen, Legate of Christ, Custodian of the Apostolic See of St. Mark at Aquileia, Successor of Pope Leo X, hereby and forthwith impose by these presents a ban of excommunication upon all heads of states and government officials of any level who impose any legal restrictions upon the Church, engage in hostility against the Church, openly oppose Church sovereignty and authority, prevent the clergy from fulfilling their duties, prevent the faithful from religious participation, or impose any penalties upon the clergy or faithful for religious participation and the fulfillment of their spiritual duties. This does not apply to any such persons in government of a state that make requests of the Church, seeking to work together with the Church as a partner. Neither does this apply to any such persons in government of a state that merely imposes general restrictions that do not specifically apply to spiritual activities, but temporarily modify the manner in which such activities are carried out in the interest of public health without in any way preventing that which is determined by the Church to be appropriate and necessary spiritual activity.

     Under the provisions of this ban, any civil official to which it applies suffers immediate loss of legitimacy to hold civil office. Therefore, all edicts, orders, legislation, judgments, and other acts that apply to their civil office that they carry out, decree, or impose during the imposition of this ban are rightly considered null and void as long as this ban remains in force. Furthermore, the faithful who individually choose to disobey such officials commit no moral offense by doing so. Most importantly, the faithful are entirely justified in making a personal decision to disobey especially the anti-religious acts and regulations of such officials and are absolved from any moral responsibility from such disobedience to the civil government. Moreover, this ban and all its provisions likewise apply to any civil official or agent of a civil government that seeks to impose penalties upon the faithful who do not follow provisions, decrees, orders, and regulations of civil officials excommunicated under this ban are likewise excommunicated by this ban.

     The provisions of this ban are reserved to this See. They may be lifted for a particular person without further act immediately upon true repentance and removal of all offending civil provisions, provided that such removal is done for the purpose of respect of the faith, fear of God, acknowledgment and reverence of Church sovereignty and authority, and the benefit of the souls of the faithful. Any removal of such provisions by a civil official for any other reason shall not result in automatic lifting of this ban.

     We genuinely and sincerely hope and desire that the civil officials excommunicated under this ban may repent and be reconciled with the Church. In such a case, We would welcome them with open arms. The Church and the civil state should be partners working for the common good of the people, with the acknowledgment that such work only is legitimate if it is under God, with the Church supreme above the state. Again, We pray that the civil officials may be reconciled with Almighty God and His Holy Church. Until such time, We enjoin all civil officials covered by this ban from any and all exercise of their civil office.



Ego Archipater R.


Friday, April 10, 2020

Stations of the Cross - Archfather Leads Private Recitation

SANS-SOUCI OUEST 10 April 2020 (ORCNS) - Archfather-Count Don Rutherford I led a private recitation of the Stations of the Cross, otherwise known as the Via Crucis, today, Good Friday, at the Résidence Sans-Souci Ouest. The Stations of the Cross are a Catholic devotion commemorating the last day of Jesus Christ on earth as a man. There are fourteen or stations, each with a devotion focusing on specific events of that day. It begins with His condemnation and ends with Him being laid in the tomb. The devotion for each station involves a meditation, the Pater Noster, the Ave Maria, and a series of other prayers, versicles, and responses. Although this recitation is done in one single location, the Via Crucis often involves moving from one icon to another, each representing one of the fourteen stations. The Via Crucis recited here is according to the traditional Catholic ritual as found in the Rituale Anglicanum, published by the Imperial Patriarchate, with both Latin and liturgical English used. Following its long-standing practices and experience, the Anglo-Italian Imperial Patriarchate, Anglican Rite Roman Catholic Church continues to lead the way during in reaching diverse global audiences through media and mission work during the global pandemic.


Archfather Don Rutherford Recites Vespers for Good Friday

SANS-SOUCI OUEST 10 April 2020 (ORCNS) - HIRH Don Rutherford I, Florentine Archfather shared a private recitation of Vespers for Good Friday. As is customary during Lent, Vespers is said traditionally during the morning during Lent rather than the evening, as it is during the rest of the liturgical year. The Archfather wears the version of the choral habit for Good Friday, on which day the prelates of the Imperial Patriarchate lay aside the lace rochet as a sign of mourning. Following its long-standing practices and experience, the Anglo-Italian Imperial Patriarchate, Anglican Rite Roman Catholic Church continues to lead the way during in reaching diverse global audiences through media and mission work during the global pandemic.




Walsingham Guard, Naval Guard Among First to Respond During Global Pademic

By Jean DuBois

WG General Command 10 April 2020 (ORCNS) - The men and women of the Walsingham Guard and Walsingham Naval Guard were among the first to help their communities during the COVID-19 Global Pendemic of 2020. Some are donating supplies, some deliver food. Others devote their professional expertise to hospitals, crisis centers, and local and national governments, as well as high-level international policy work. Some work to help the poor and marginalised people around the world who have been affected by the pandemic. We encourage others to do their part to help communities in need by generously donating funds or supplies to local charities or via the Guard using this link:





Thursday, April 9, 2020

Holy Thursday Letter

PATRIARCHAL SEE 4 April 2020 (ORCNS) - The following letter was issued for Holy Thursday by HIRH Archfather-Count Don Rutherford, as is traditional each year. 


To my venerable brethren the Bishops, to the priests and regular clergy, and to the Serene Princes, Illustrious Nobles, and Honourable Knights, greetings on this Holy Thursday as we began the transition from Lent to the glorious celebration of Easter.

On this feast day upon which we celebrate, commemorate, and experience the institution of the Holy Eucharist, we together find ourselves in a world currently in a state of global confusion and turmoil, walking in darkness. Yet we know well the words: The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light. Our Lord is that light, the only light that illuminates the world. In this time in which some of the most basic, fundamental aspects of human dignity are being violated or ignored by world leaders, and even in which the ability of the Church herself to function is being threatened by civil government, we together must keep our faith in our Lord, looking forward to the future, doing what we can to help others along the way, following the example of Christ.

During this time in which we remember the institution of the Holy Priesthood by our Lord, it is also a marvelous time to give thanks for being in the tenth year of the modern Imperial Patriarchate. The past decade has been a time of slowly rebuilding and joining together the diverse and unique patrimony of the See in which we all serve. Following ancient custom, this tenth year is the year in which the modern patriarchate has been perfected in its standing and sovereignty, and thus it is in this year that the totality of the rich customs particular to this See and its ancient heritage were brought into use and public knowledge. That is the cause of the recent changes that you may have noticed. We therefore also take this opportunity call to mind and honour Our predecessors as Florentine Archfathers, who were also Roman Popes: Leo X, first Baroque Pope who launched the counter-reformation; Clement VII, who opposed the Protestant break with Rome in England under Henry VIII and who personally approved the theory of Catholic cleric Nicholas Copernicus that the earth revolves around the sun almost a century before Galileo; Pius IV, who brought the Council of Trent successfully to a fruitful conclusion; and Leo XI, whose reign was less than one month, but who earlier has served as Florentine ambassador for Pius V, legate to France for Clement VIII, and Archbishop of Florence.

We have indeed, through the eternal blessings of Almighty God and the intercession of the Blessed Vision Mary and our celestial patron St. Stephen the Deacon and Protomartyr, arrived at a most special and sacred milestone. We carry on the faith and traditions of Florence and Rome into the present era and, by the grace of God and the help of our Lady and blessed Stephen, we will carry on our rich traditions, flowing from the altar of God, into the future together.

We wish each of you a blessed Holy Week and a most joyous Easter season. May we celebrate and rejoice in that wonderful event that brings us all together.

Sunday, April 5, 2020

Archpatral Extra-Liturgical Sermon for Palm Sunday 2020

PATRIARCHAL SEE 5 April 2020 (ORCNS) - HIRH Don Rutherford I, Florentine Archfather gave an extra-liturgical sermon for Palm Sunday 2020. Video below.