Skip to comments.A Father and Son Swim the Tiber and become Priests [Ecumenical]
Posted on 12/29/2008 1:00:14 PM PST by NYer
Well, this made me put down my coffee cup and go "Wow."
A father, a son, a conversion, and more.
From the Times of London:
In what is believed to be a first, a father and son, both former Anglican clergy, have been ordained as Catholic priests and are now working for the same archdiocese, Birmingham.There's more at the link. An awestruck wag of the stole to Amy (and wishes for a happy new year, too!)
Father Dominic Cosslett, 36, and his father, Father Ron Cosslett, 70, were both ordained by Archbishop Vincent Nichols, pictured above by Peter Jennings. Nichols is the favourite to succeed Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor as Archbishop of Westminster when he steps down early next year and the latest ordination of Father Dominic on 20 December shows he is continuing in the tradition of true Catholicity to which the British church has so long been witness.
Father Dominic was formerly an Anglican priest at the Church of Christ the King at Lourdes in Coventry. His father, Father Ron Cosslett, aged 70, also a former Anglican priest, was ordained as a Catholic priest by Nichols 3 July 2005. He is now priest-in-charge harge at St Joseph’s, Darlaston in the West Midlands.
Father Dominic, who is not married, has from a young age felt called to a celibate lifestyle. "Although as an Anglican marriage was open to me the way I live my life is naturally a celibate one," he told me yesterday. His mother converted five years ago at the same time as his father and his sister and their children followed them over about a year ago.
Father and son concelebrated, celebrating the eucharist at the older Father's parish, for the first time at Christmas.
"Both of us were in the Catholic tradition of Anglicanism," said Father Dominic. "Like a lot of us in that tradition, we had always felt the Catholic Church was the rock from which we were hewn. It was always part of our journey, our faith, to seek unity with Rome. We came to the point where we felt we could not exercise our understanding of Catholicism within Anglicanism. It was time for us to go home."
His father started out in Monmouth, South Wales and then moved to Burslem, one of the Five Towns in the Potteries in the Lichfield diocese. The family returned to Wales and his father's last Anglican parish was St Paul's in Swansea.
Under the guidelines agreed in the Catholic church for the reception of Anglican clergy who wish to become Catholic priests, Father Dominic, who studied theology and Llampeter and trained for the Anglican priesthood at the high church Mirfield College of the Resurrection before being priested in 1997, underwent a shortened training as to be a Catholic priest. He spent a year in the Spain at the Royal English College at Valladolid and then went to seminary at St Mary's Oscott.
As an Anglican, he served his curacy in Abergavenny in the Monmouth diocese when his bishop was Dr Rowan Williams, now Archbishop of Canterbury. He moved to his own parish in the Birmingham diocese when its bishop was Dr John Sentamu, now Archbishop of York. He speaks highly of both men, but neither was enough to make him stay.
"I realised my own journey was to seek unity with Rome. Balanced with that was the awareness that the Anglican Church was going in a very different direction with various decisions it was making. I just felt I could not agree with those decisions. It comes down to authority. As an Anglican, it was sometimes very difficult. One parish might believe one thing. another might believe something else.
"There is an incredible rainbow of thought in the Anglican Church. Perhaps I was looking more for a central authority of teaching that the Catholic Church has. It was something I had always been looking for."
He recognises his situation, with his father as a priest, might appear unusual to some but for him it feels normal. There is a long tradition in the Anglican church of father-and-son priests. The ministry often runs in families.
Asked whether he believes all Catholic priests should be allowed to marry, he said: "That is not my decision. The teaching of the Church is there. The Holy Father has graciously allowed those who are former Anglicans who are married to become priests. The teaching remains the same and that is certainly not for me to comment on."
But he was careful to emphasise that his new path was not a reaction against Anglicanism.
"Becoming a Catholic is not so much about being disatisfied with being an Anglican as about having a
positive engagement with the Catholic Church. I am very grateful for my Anglican days. But I realised there is something else in the Catholic Church. That is very much what lay behind my decision."
God Bless them in their new ministry!
I hope “swim the Tiber” was a metaphor. I don’t think it would be healthy to really do it and it is written “thou shalt not tempt thy God”.
Looks like they were already on your side of the Tiber...They didn't even get wet...
As another former "High Church" Anglican, I can honestly say that I feel the same as these gentlemen. I didn't leave the Anglicans . . . THEY left ME.
Thus bringing me to the realization (if belatedly) that Rome was where I had belonged all along.
The Catholic Emancipation Act was passed in 1829, and that was the big watershed, but there were lots of little changes removing disabilities that were made prior to that. Things began moving around 1800, and gathered steam by 1815 (a convenient date - battle of Waterloo).
“Looks like they were already on your side of the Tiber...They didn’t even get wet”
Iscool: I must admit, that one was pretty good.
He was actually a captain in Nelson's Navy, served under Lord Cochrane and saw a lot of action. His novels are the real thing, since he was actually there. He's a good writer if you are amenable to the style of the time -- but what I think is his very best book, Mr. Midshipman Easy, is written in a very casual, modern style and is also a sly indictment of socialism.
I never could stand the Hornblower books, the hero always struck me as a neurotic 20th-century man adrift in the early 19th century. Captain Marryat's characters are honest to goodness British sailors and true to their time and place. His portraits of some of the 'characters' before the mast are priceless.
That's why folks have always referred to the Piskie High Churchers as "more Roman than Rome". It is especially true since VCII.
All those good Irish soldiers and sailors demonstrated that they were willing and able to fight for England.
**Father Dominic Cosslett, 36, and his father, Father Ron Cosslett, 70, were both ordained by Archbishop Vincent Nichols, **
Welcome home Father Dominic and Father Ron!
Gloria in excelcis!
I recently finished a biography of Nelson. I will not even try to summarize here his courage, seamanship, patriotism and revolutionary tactics.
Fast forward. What is, or do you have an opinion of the RN performance at Jutland?
. . . I think it was a draw. Beatty lost the advantage, but the Germans didn't gain their objective either.
I wasn't aware that the Anglican church was so 'Roman'...Seems hardly worth the effort to call them Protestant...What are the major differences between the two???
You may recall that for most of the 16th century, England ping-ponged back and forth between Catholic and Protestant, with whoever was top dog burning the opposition while they were out of power. To put it mildly, a lot of hurt feelings were created by this ecclesiastical barbeque.
When Elizabeth came to the throne, she created an Established Church to which all her subjects were required to belong. To assuage the hurt feelings of MOST of her subjects, the Established (Anglican) Church allowed you to be ALMOST a Catholic or ALMOST a Puritan, so long as you were willing to subscribe to the Thirty-Nine Articles of Religion (familiarly known as The XXXIX). Of course, the closer you got to either end of the scale, the more of the XXXIX you had to blink at or just ignore. (And if you went over the line, Elizabeth burned her heretics at BOTH ends).
So at one end of the scale you have folks who are "low church" -- very little if any ritual, no vestments, sermon the center of the worship service, essentially Protestant Evangelical -- and at the other those who are "high church" -- all but Catholic in doctrine, practice, and ritual, and they'll tell you, "don't tell anybody, but we're really Catholic, they just don't recognize our Apostolic Succession." And you have the 'muddled middle' or Broad Church, the folks who take a little bit of everything.
These folks tended to split up into congenial parishes under the umbrella of the local bishop, so that (to cite a local example from my former diocese) in the same area you could have on the one hand a church like St. Dunstan's where there was barely a cloth on the altar and the priest in street clothes and a collar, with a surplice over for the service, and communion only once a month, and one-hour sermons . . . and on the other Our Saviour which had gold frontals, priests with birettas, chanted High Mass, Eucharistic Adoration, and the Rosary every Friday. And both churches said "Episcopal Church" on the sign.
This cozy apple cart was upset by the liberal Broad Churchers taking over. They don't believe in anything, so both the Evangelicals and the High Churchers (who DO believe, although they don't agree on details) had to leave. The Evangelicals tended to go PCA or conservative Lutheran, or to one of the independent Evangelical churches, while the High Churchers headed for Rome.
The Episcopalians in American inherited the system, without the state control.
Sad to see them go, but if they believe everything the Roman Catholic Church believes, then that’s where they belong. We’re fighting to keep the heretics and heterodox from consumming Anglicanism (although ECUSA is lost), and we need all the help we can get.
Thank you for your words. It’s really nice that we have people positively joining the church (as in they come for a postive reason, not just to leave the Anglicans but because they truly believe that The Church is God’s own). you and the father and son duo mentioned here are blessed and I thank you for all the life and joy you will bring to our family in Christ
As Cardinal Newnan said (and I'm paraphrasing) the more you study history the more you realize that the Church is . . . THE Church.
And I don't have to worry about the Apostolic Succession any more, either. That's a great worry off my mind!