Skip to comments.If Only King Henry VIII Could Have Waited for Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor and Cardinal O'Brien
Posted on 02/17/2005 5:10:40 PM PST by Land of the Irish
|February 14, 2005|
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Get off your knees, Dr Williams
St. Thomas More, pray for us
St. Edmund Campion, pray for us
St. John Fisher, pray for us
St. Margaret of York, pray for us
Perhaps Drolesky is unaware of the existence in Britain of a noisy minority of people (dramatically over-represented in the media and in Tony Blair's New Labour government) whose ideology is little different from Jacobinism and who want nothing more than to see the monarchy abolished and replaced by a totally secular republic. I assure you that such a republic will not be an improvement from a Catholic standpoint. When the very existence of the monarchy is constantly under attack by leftists, I really don't think this is the time for Cardinals or anyone else to denounce the royal family from the Right.
Drolesky talks about currying favor with the "rich and powerful." Well, Prince Charles may be rich, but he is anything but powerful. In fact he and his position are quite vulnerable, as shown by the recent opinion polls in which a significant portion of the British people, demonstrating an abysmal lack of understanding of the concept of hereditary monarchy, expressed a desire for Prince William, rather than his father, to succeed the Queen. Of the serious shortcomings of today's Roman Catholic hierarchy, the absence of episcopal condemnation of this marriage surely is pretty far down the list.
It may seem odd for me to discourage criticism of the royals from the right, since I am generally quite sympathetic both to paleoconservative criticisms of George W. Bush and the Republican Party and to traditionalist criticisms of Pope John Paul II and the Novus Ordo hierarchy. But there is this crucial difference: neither the presidency nor the papacy are in any danger of being abolished. The most furious leftist critics of Bush want a different president, not no president; dissenting "Catholics" want a (more) liberal Pope, not no pope. The British monarchy's position being rather less secure, I don't think the cardinals would have done British conservatism or Christianity any favors by exposing the Windsors to attacks from both directions.
Apart from Cardinal O'Brien's recognition of anti-Catholic legislation that still exists from the era of King Henry VIII and Queen Elizabeth I,
Actually, the 1701 Act of Settlement dates from the reign of King William III. Britain had two Catholic monarchs after Elizabeth I: Charles II (a deathbed convert) and James II. I am not impressed with calls to repeal the Act because they are always based not on a desire to restore the pre-1534 Catholic monarchy, but on appeals to the false modern and secular principles of inclusiveness and pluralism. Until the return of an explicitly Catholic monarchy (with succession restricted to Catholics) is a possibility, Catholics and monarchists are better off with the Anglican status quo, which at least preserves (even if imperfectly) the concept of a Christian monarchy.
Its OK to feel slightly nauseated by grand occasions of state, to feel that royalist pageantry stifles the spirit of Jesus Christ; and the occasional republican fantasy is nothing to be ashamed of.
No, it's not OK, and republicanism in a British context is something to be ashamed of!
Anglicanism is certainly flawed from a Catholic point of view, but its rich liturgical, musical, and architectural traditions (which of course are ultimately derived from Catholicism) and pageantry are its best feature, and ought to be celebrated rather than disparaged. From a traditionalist perspective, a "high church" Anglican service is likely to seem a lot more Catholic than the AmChurch Novus Ordo!
As for republicanism (which in Britain means anti-royalism, not Americanism), that pernicious cause is even more incompatible with Anglicanism than it is with Catholicism. It is simply ridiculous for an Anglican not to be a monarchist. Any Anglican uncomfortable with the monarchy should find another branch of Protestantism.
By the way, given your screenname, I realize you might not have the warmest of feelings toward the British monarchy. But for better or for worse, it is the only present-day monarchy most people have heard of, as well as the only European monarchy to have retained all the old pomp and ceremony (including a religious coronation ceremony), and so at least for those two reasons I think its survival merits the concern of all monarchists regardless of faith or ancestry.
Kjvail, would you please ping the "Crown Crew"?
I imagine some here will agree more fully with Drolesky than I did.
I'm pretty much in agreement with you on this one. I don't really see the point in condemning the PoW and his mistress because their marriage would not be considered valid by the Catholic Church. True, it is Biblical, traditional etc that what the Church teaches on that is correct, but so is the supremacy of Rome, so is the Real Presence, so is adultery and a million and one other things. I really don't see what a condemnation of this would accomplish other than to make those who think the Church is big, mean and scary even stronger in their prejudice. I doubt very seriously that even the most heartfelt appeal would suddenly make the Prince see the error of his ways and embrace the true faith.
I just hope everyone gets all this out of their system now......
"curse not the king, no not in thy thought, and curse not the rich in thy bedchamber; for a bird of the air shall carry the voice and that which hath wings shall tell the matter"
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Mr Drolesky is actually labouring under false assumptions in this article. Why should the Cardinals condemn this proposed marriage?
a) Charlie boy is a widower and therefore is free to marry.
b) Camilla was "married" to a Catholic (Parker-Bowles) who subsequently was granted an annulment and therefore their "marriage" never existed. She is therefore free to marry.
The delicious irony of this situation is that were either of them Catholic, they would be completely free to marry in a Catholic Church. (I am not here speaking of their being in a state of grace to participate in the Sacraments, however, as they are almost certainly habitual fornicators.)
Instead, the very "church" which was created to allow the marriage of the English monarch is not able to marry them! What goes around comes around I guess.
Really??!! I've never read that. If so, I wonder why the Parker Bowles annulment hasn't been mentioned in all the coverage of this marriage. Do you have a link or source for this information?
I was unaware of the annulment.
"I was unaware of the annulment."
So was I until yesterday, however, I assume O'Brien and Murphy O'Connor have known about it for some time and hence their reactions.
It was mentioned in the Catholic press here this weekend and I assume they have good grounds for the accuracy of the info.
Shame for the PoW that the CofE doesn't recognise Catholic annulments anymore, but if they did then it would put them on rather dodgy ground re Henry VIII's annulled marriage to Katherine of Aragon!