The press release is important, not only for its content; it also signals how the dialogue at the highest level between our Churches is continuing, with an agreed mandate and agenda. So official Anglican-Roman Catholic relations are on very solid ground, despite any awkward feelings resulting from the Vatican's announcement of the Apostolic Constitition Anglicanorum ceotibus.
Anglicans in the Diocese in Europe have very cordial relations with the Roman Catholic Church. In many places these warm relations are vital to our church's life where we receive the hospitality of Roman Catholic bishops and the use of their buildings. We therefore welcome this strong affirmation of our continuing pilgrimage towards the unity which is Christ’s will. The press release is as follows:
Following the meeting between Pope Benedict XVI and the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, at the Vatican on 21 November 2009, at which they reaffirmed their desire to strengthen ecumenical relations between Anglicans and Roman Catholics, a preparatory committee met on 23 November 2009 to prepare the third phase of the Anglican-Roman Catholic International Commission (ARCIC). It has been decided that the phase will begin within the coming year.
This third phase will deal with fundamental questions regarding the Church as Communion – Local and Universal, and how in communion the local and universal Church comes to discern right ethical teaching.
Over the coming months members will be nominated to the Commission, and a date for its first meeting will be announced.