It's official now! The formerly-Episcopal Mt. Calvary Church in Baltimore will become a Catholic Church. The congregation and their rector, Fr. Jason Catania (pictured right), voted overwhelmingly in October of 2010 to seek reception into the Catholic Church. Yesterday they officially completed negotiations with the Episcopal Diocese of Maryland regarding property issues. All the legal "i's" are crossed and the "t's" dotted, so they can now proclaim publicly what many of us have known unofficially for some time: They will be received at a Confirmation Mass at Mt. Calvary this Sunday, January 22, at 10:00am.
The celebrant for the Mass will be Fr. Jeffrey Steenson, the newly-appointed Ordinary for the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter.
A service of Solemn Evensong and Benediction will be held, also at Mt. Calvary, Sunday afternoon at 4:30pm. Fr. Dwight Longanecker of the Standing on My Head blog, and a newly-appointed contributor to the Anglo-Catholic blog, will preach. Fr. Eric Bergman, chaplain of the St. Thomas More Society of Scranton, PA, will serve as officiant.
This will be almost a year to the day from January 23 of last year, when the "Mid-Atlantic Gathering" was held in Baltimore, including an Anglican Use Mass at St. Alphonsus Catholic Church, followed by a lovely reception in the undercroft of Mt. Calvary. The following day (Jan. 24) a group of us met up in Washington to participate in the March for Life under a large red banner with a picture of Pope Benedict XVI and the words, "Thank you, Holy Father, for Anglicanorum coetibus!" This year we will meet and march again under the same banner--on Monday, January 23. Meeting time/place is 1:00pm at the corner of 7th Street and Independence Ave., SW (just west of the Air & Space Museum). Please join us in standing up for the Culture of Life.
... And please join me in welcoming Fr. Catania and the members of Mt. Calvary Church into full communion with the one, holy, Catholic & apostolic Church. Ut unum sint!
Update: News release posted today (Jan. 19) on the website of the (Catholic) Archdiocese of Baltimore.