Catholic World News

English archbishop opposes plan to allow Communion for Anglican spouses of Catholics

October 14, 2015

Archbishop Bernard Longley of Birmingham, England, has argued strongly against a proposal to allow the Anglican spouses of Catholics to receive Communion.

Archbishop Longley—who exercises considerable influence on ecumenical questions, as the co-chairman of the Anglican-Roman Catholic International Commission (ARCIC), said that the Synod of Bishops should reject the proposal because it violates canon law. He observed:

Such a proposal would tend to establish a category of Christians not in full communion with the Catholic Church yet distinguished from other Christians by a ‘right’ to receive Holy Communion at a Catholic Mass on any occasion.

Earlier this week Archbishop Longley was quoted in an Anglican publication as suggesting that the Catholic Church might consider broadening the existing norms, which allow for Anglican spouses of Catholics to receive Communion under certain extraordinary circumstances. His new statement indicates that the archbishop would not support a dramatic change.


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