Pontiff Donates $250,000 to UK Ordinariate

Nuncio Says Gift Is Sign of Pope's Commitment to Christian Unity

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LONDON, England, MAY 3, 2012 (Zenit.org).- Benedict XVI has donated $250,000 to support the work of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham. 

The news from Rome came to Monsignor Keith Newton, the ordinary.

Responding to the gift, Monsignor Newton said, “I am very grateful to the Holy Father for his generosity and support. This gift is a great help and encouragement as we continue to grow and develop our distinctive ecclesial life, while seeking to contribute to the wider work of evangelization in England and Wales."

The Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham was established in January 2011 to allow Anglicans to enter into the full communion of the Catholic Church while retaining essential elements of their heritage and tradition. It is so far comprised of about 1,200 lay faithful and 60 clergy spread across the United Kingdom.

The apostolic nuncio in the United Kingdom, Archbishop Antonio Mennini, spoke of the gift as "a clear sign of [the Pope's] personal commitment to the work of Christian Unity and the special place the ordinariate holds in his heart. I pray for the continuing success and development of the ordinariate."

Speaking of the need for further fundraising, the nuncio added, “I urge all those who share our Holy Father’s vision to lend their spiritual and material support to the ordinariate, especially in these early days."

Monsignor Newton, in response to the remarks of Archbishop Mennini, said, “The support and encouragement given to us by the Apostolic Nuncio has been very significant. We were very pleased to welcome him as the Principal Celebrant of our Chrism Mass: a clear sign of our deep desire to remain closely united to the Holy Father."