The Pope’s press officer, Jesuit Father Federico
Lombardi, addressed issues regarding the forthcoming Apostolic Constitution on
Personal Ordinariates for the Anglicans entering full communion with the
Catholic Church this today:

There has been widespread speculation, based on
supposedly knowledgeable remarks by an Italian correspondent Andrea Tornielli,
that the delay in publication of the Apostolic Constitution regarding Personal
Ordinariates for Anglicans entering into full communion with the Catholic
Church, announced on October 20, 2009, by Cardinal William Levada, Prefect of
the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, is due to more than
“technical” reasons. According to this speculation, there is a
serious substantial issue at the basis of the delay, namely, disagreement about
whether celibacy will be the norm for the future clergy of the Provision.

Levada offered the following comments on this speculation: “Had I been
asked I would happily have clarified any doubt about my remarks at the press
conference. There is no substance to such speculation. No one at the Vatican
has mentioned any such issue to me. The delay is purely technical in the sense
of ensuring consistency in canonical language and references. The translation
issues are secondary; the decision not to delay publication in order to wait
for the ‘official’ Latin text to be published in Acta Apostolicae Sedis was
made some time ago.

The drafts prepared by the working group, and submitted for
study and approval through the usual process followed by the Congregation, have
all included the following statement, currently Article VI of the

§1 Those who ministered as Anglican deacons, priests, or bishops,
and who fulfill the requisites established by canon law and are not impeded by
irregularities or other impediments may be accepted by the Ordinary as
candidates for Holy Orders in the Catholic Church. In the case of married
ministers, the norms established in the Encyclical Letter of Pope Paul VI
Sacerdotalis coelibatus, n. 42 and in the Statement “In June” are to
be observed. Unmarried ministers must submit to the norm of clerical celibacy
of CIC can. 277, §1.

§2. The Ordinary, in full observance of the discipline of
celibate clergy in the Latin Church, as a rule (pro regula) will admit only
celibate men to the order of presbyter. He may also petition the Roman Pontiff,
as a derogation from can. 277, §1, for the admission of married men to the
order of presbyter on a case by case basis, according to objective criteria
approved by the Holy See.

This article is to be understood as consistent with
the current practice of the Church, in which married former Anglican ministers
may be admitted to priestly ministry in the Catholic Church on a case by case
basis. With regard to future seminarians, it was considered purely speculative
whether there might be some cases in which a dispensation from the celibacy
rule might be petitioned. For this reason, objective criteria about any such
possibilities (e.g. married seminarians already in preparation) are to be developed
jointly by the Personal Ordinariate and the Episcopal Conference, and submitted
for approval of the Holy See.”

Cardinal Levada said he anticipates the
technical work on the Constitution and Norms will be completed by the end of
the first week of November.