Richard John Neuhaus has another Oolon Coluphid moment in his latest Rome Diary entry. Now, he's been declaring Anglicanism dead for years, a practice he admits irritates some of us:
"But the immediate question here is whether, as correspondents allege, I am habitually scornful of the Anglican communion."
Well, he has been not only scornful; he has tended to assume a tone which I can only describe as smart-aleck. Yes, it's entertaining to harp on the latest "epatez les orthodoxes" escapades of John Shelby Spong, but after a while the sheer irrelevance of his "faith" to the average Episcopalian is grating.
Also grating are Neuhaus's references to Newman, whose example he followed after a fashion (in Neuhaus's case, the conversion was from being a Lutheran Pastor). Newman left; Keble did not. And indeed, if the threatened disintegration of ECUSA takes place (and with the public statements of the various parties, this seems assured) the supply of Anglican converts may dry up, as traditionalists may no longer have anyone to flee.
But in any case, we are obviously in media res. The story of Anglicanism is not only not over, it is approaching a crisis which, one way or the other, will change its character forever. Neuhaus doesn't know the end of the story, nor does anyone else on earth.
And while I'm at it: the comments on the princely wedding were tacky. I can only imagine that the issues of Prince Charles' sins would be, for Rowan Cantuar, a matter for the confessional, and not properly the subject of public discussion.
(a tip of the tippet to titusonenine for bringing this to my attention)