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Canadian Anglican parishes ask Vatican for Personal Ordinariate
By Simon Caldwell

19 March 2010

More than 40 breakaway Anglican parishes in Canada have decided to convert en masse to the Catholic Church, it emerged this week.

They have voted to take up the offer made by Pope Benedict XVI in November that permits vicars and their entire congregations to cross the Tiber while keeping many of their Anglican traditions, including married priests.

The leaders of the Anglican Catholic Church of Canada - a member of the breakaway Traditional Anglican Communion (TAC) - have sent a petition to the Vatican requesting full communion with Rome through the implementation of the Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum Coetibus.

In their petition to Cardinal William Levada, the prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, three Canadian bishops expressed their desire to "seek a communal and ecclesial way of being Anglican Catholics in communion with the Holy See, at once treasuring the full expression of Catholic faith and treasuring our tradition within which we have come to this moment".

"We have all read and studied with care the Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum Coetibus with the complementary norms and the accompanying commentary and now in response to your invitation to contact your dicastery to begin the process you lay out, we respectfully ask that the apostolic constitution be implemented in Canada," the bishops said.

The Canadians are the fourth - but second largest - group of Anglican churches to have taken up the Pope's offer, with its request following those of TAC groups in Britain, Australia and the United States.


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