Speaking Heart To Heart
In our October 1983 editorial, I needed to make an appeal for funds. I am happy to report that the response to that appeal — and to other private appeals — was adequate, and that the New Oxford Review is now on solid ground.
That October editorial also indicated that the NOR could thenceforth be regarded as a Roman Catholic periodical (with non-Roman Catholic writers and readers still being most welcome in our midst). As was expected, the response was mixed: from very negative (“cancel my subscription!”) through puzzled to very positive, with the positive responses prevailing.
For those who have felt puzzled by the NOR’s transition, we would say, “Let not your hearts be troubled.” It should be apparent by now that there are not going to be any drastic shifts in our editorial policies. Indeed, we aspire to no exclusivist, triumphalist, inquisitorial, or truculent “Catholicism.” We will continue to be ecumenical in spirit and aspiration, a meeting ground for Christians of various church allegiances.
This is not said as a magnanimous gesture — or as a condescending concession. For, if we were to become narrowly and insularly “Roman” it would be a disservice both to the Second Vatican Council and to the Roman Catholic Church herself. There are manifold Christian riches that the Roman Catholic Church yearns to appropriate more fully in order to be more manifestly Christian and universal. What might those riches be?
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As a high-church Episcopalian who adhered to the so-called branch theory of the Church, I considered that I was already a Catholic.
We aspire to no exclusivist, triumphalist, inquisitorial, or truculent “Catholicism.” We will continue to be ecumenical in spirit and aspiration, a meeting ground for Christians.
Clare Boothe Luce wrote that most converts, like herself, "enter God's kingdom through the gates of pain."