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Pope Francis allows Catholics to join the ordinariate

Mgr Keith Newton with other ordinariate priests at Our Lady of Assumption church in Soho (Photo: Lorna Moffat)

Pope Francis has widened the remit of the world’s Personal Ordinariates by allowing Catholics who have been baptised but not yet confirmed to become members.

Previously, only former Anglicans and their family members could join the ordinariates.

A statement from the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham said the change gave new scope for ordinariate members to evangelise.

The amendment, it said, “confirms the place of the Personal Ordinariates within the mission of the wider Catholic Church, not simply as a jurisdiction for those from the Anglican tradition, but as a contributor to the urgent work of the New Evangelisation”.

It added that Catholics “may not become members of a Personal Ordinariate ‘for purely subjective motives or personal preference”.