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Friday, April 15, 2005

Royal Wedding, Charles and Camilla

Okay, also rather yesterday. But here we are anyway, an open letter to the Archbishop of Westminster. Who's right? Did the Cardinal's "every happiness" really mean "we hope you both become Catholics and live in accordance with the teaching of the Holy Catholic Faith?"

Your Eminence
I was astonished to read Ruth Gledhill's article in The Times on 11th February 2005, under the heading: "Civil Ceremony Wins Approval of Clergy." This included the following paragraphs:
1. "The Roman Catholic Church in England and Wales also backed the wedding."(I presume that she meant the Archdiocese of Westminster)
2. "The Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor, said 'I know that Catholics will join with me in praying for the Prince of Wales and Mrs Parker Bowles and in wishing them every happiness."
I am making two assumptions, and if either are incorrect, I of course would withdraw what follows below:
(a) You were not seriously misquoted.(b) The marriage between Andrew and Camilla Parker-Bowles is regarded by the Catholic Church as valid.
If both these assumptions are correct, your remark concerning "every happiness" is disgraceful.
Firstly, how do you know that Catholics will join you?
I have been a Catholic all my life. I am aware of Christ's teaching on adultery and also of the Ten Commandments. The Catholic Catechism, which one might have assumed that you had a duty to uphold, states:
"Contracting a new union, even if it is recognised by civil law, adds to the gravity of the rupture: the remarried spouse is then in a situation of public and permanent adultery."
Secondly, the best service that one can render to the couple is not to wish them "every happiness", but to denounce the bogus "marriage". Adultery is a mortal sin, and they are already, as far as we can know, embarked on a Hell bound path. One wonders too how far this high profile flouting of God's law will insidiously influence society still more along this path.
The acquiescence of the Queen to the "marriage", despite purporting, absolutely falsely, to be the supreme governor of a Christian church, has been deplorable.
Who now stands for Christ?
Not you, clearly. The interpretation from your words is that the Catholic Church has gone along with it.
Recent "Church of England" law is quite obviously opposed to Christ's teaching on marriage, and the service of blessings after the event is precisely the type of cringing hypocrisy that I would expect from that body. Yet you have left them the field, and so far as the nation is now concerned, Christian doctrine is that some "remarried" after divorce, if not quite alpha plus, are no worse than beta minus, and an eclesiastical pat on the head with a nice blessing service will smooth it all down.
Decent Anglicans are sheep without a shepherd, and Rome, who could have been their voice in this, is silent. Rome, a Church that I felt honoured to belong to, has become an increasing source of shame. It is as if the shepherds have invested in breeding wolves. All Christian principle will be lost and we shall witness a trivial circus of wedding dresses; who is invited and not invited; and biographies of cleaning ladies at Windsor Castle.
I should have expected:
It was with sadness that I learnt of the plans of the Prince of Wales and Mrs Parker Bowles.
The teaching of Our Lord Jesus Christ on marriage is quite clear. If a marriage is valid, then no divorce can invalidate it, and any subsequent attempt to 'remarry' simply underwrites adultery.
It is binding on all couples to uphold the laws of Christ, and to fail in this is to imperil their immortal souls.
Accordingly, the Catholic Church condemns the event, and calls upon all the faithful to shun it now, and never recognise it afterwards.
The proposed service of blessing adds nothing. Indeed it will be rightly interpreted by many as hypocritical in the circumstances.
The notice in my ground floor window reads: "This adulterous bogus 'marriage' spits in the face of Christ's teaching" It has been up since Thursday, and so far no windows have been broken, nor, interestingly, have I had a reaction of any kind.
I don't mind unpopularity. And you have the privilege of wearing red robes, which symbolise the blood of the martyrs.
Yours sincerely

Alan Whaites