Roman Catholic Bishop Francis X. DiLorenzo has given the Church of the Holy Apostles – a blended Catholic and Episcopal parish – until Feb. 28 to end its 30-year practice of celebrating Holy Communion together.
DiLorenzo told parish leaders in November that allowing Catholics and non-Catholics to participate in a combined communion liturgy was a violation of Roman Catholic norms....
Launched in 1977 under Bishop Walter Sullivan, the parish is led by Catholic and Episcopal clergy who share leadership duties and perform services together.
During the Eucharisitic portion of the service, the priests move to opposite ends of the sanctuary and perform the Holy Communion rite at separate altars, using similar but separate Catholic and Episcopal liturgies.
It is an arrangement, parishioners say, that over the years has enabled families in mixed marriages to worship side by side and helped build bonds that transcend denominational boundaries.....
Celebrating each church’s communion liturgy concurrently in the same room, the statement from the diocese said, is “contrary to liturgical norms and Church doctrine on the Eucharist.”... .
[The Rev. Michael Ferguson, the church’s Episcopal priest,] said there are also “huge pastoral issues that have to be worked out because there are people here who have been worshipping together for years.”The Liturgy of the Word is almost identical in the two churches, and they aren't doing the Eucharist together, so I don't understand why the Roman Catholic bishop thinks he's going to get Episcopalian cooties.