The Portal Archive May 2013 - Page 8

ragon THE P RTAL May 2013 Page 8 Loved or loathed You either loved her or loathed her, and even in death Margaret Thatcher continues to divide as she did in life. Some worshipped her as the woman who transformed the country, while others bitterly accused her of widening the divide between the rich and the poor. On the day of her death most comments on her life and times were favourable, as one tends to expect, but in the days since, the extent to which she managed to divide public opinion then and now has become evident. Newspaper headlines the day following her death included, ‘The woman who saved Britain’ and ‘The woman who tore Britain apart’; subsequent days saw much less generous assessments of this undeniably controversial prime minister’s legacy. ‘Are we being true to who we are?’ that someone might find out that you belong to the Ordinariate and be critical of you for it. One thing that Margaret Thatcher’s lovers and loathers agree on: you don’t the right thing to do have to agree with her politics to consider Margaret Two years ago we made a major shift; to the horror Thatcher a politician of conviction and principle, who of some we did the unthinkable in becoming Catholics knew what she believed and stood for. and something unconventional in doing it as members of the Ordinariate. But at that time we knew that it was During her eleven and a half years as Prime Minister the right thing to do. We could have stayed where we Mrs Thatcher did not deviate from the principles that were and ‘toed the line’, but our heartfelt convictions underpinned her politics and quite obviously worked did not allow us to do that. We could have become at building up a team of people around her who shared Catholics by the conventional route, and probably them and were skilled in communicating them to would have had an easier time of it, but again we others. believed that the Ordinariate was right for us and for the wider Church. I’m guessing that the ordinariate contains both lovers and loathers of Margaret Thatcher the politician, but pursuing our course Two years on, when what we do, and for some our we would all do well to possess the depth of belief and conviction in who we are and what we are about that very existence, still proves very unpalatable, are we she had. We are all very aware that the Ordinariate considering the U-turn or are we pursuing our course has its lovers and its loathers; those who are strongly with steely con viction, tenacity and passion? supportive of it and want to see it prosper, and those who oppose it. St Thomas Aquinas Church, Ham But we shouldn’t be too concerned by either. It is not our aim to please others, and we can not possibly hope to please everybody. We should not be asking ourselves the question, ‘Are we being liked, or loved or loathed?’ Our question should be, ‘Are we being true to who we are?’ the courage of our convictions Knowing what the Ordinariate is about is important; believing in what the Ordinariate stands for is necessary; and having the courage of our convictions, living out those convictions and communicating them with passion is essential. Having the courage of our convictions in our context means having faith that the Ordinariate exists by the grace of God and has a definite purpose. It means being willing to stand up to defend it. Certainly it means not being ashamed of it; not fearing The four important documents of the Second Vatican Council The series of open meetings at St Thomas Aquinas Church, Ham to discuss the four important documents of the Second Vatican Council continues: Dogmatic Constitution of the Church (1964) – Tuesday 28th May Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation (1965) – Tuesday 25th June Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World (1965) – Tuesday 24th September The meetings are organised by members of the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham and begin at 7.30 pm Refreshments will be served Contact – Fr Peter Andrews peter.andrews.lon@gmail.com - 07753827967 St Thomas Aquinas R C Church, Ham Street, Richmond TW10 7HT