BY A STAFF REPORTER
FH E Catholic bishops' recently published Directory on mixed marriages was welcomed last week by an Anglican observer to the National Ecumenical Cornmission of the Bishops' Conference of England and Wales.
Canon Eric Saxon, appointed by the British Council of Churches, said he felt the provisions would help the nonCatholic partner in cases where there would have been conscientious difficulty before.
This applied especially in allowing the wedding to take place in his or her own church, and before the non-Catholic clergyman. But he said Anglicans would like fuller in formation on the new provisions.
A spokesman for the Ecumenical Commission, which met in Birmingham, said it realised that the main problem was to get through to the parishes the range of possibilities opened up by the Directory.
The spokesman said that Diocesan Ecumenical Commissions were encouraged to promote ecumenical discussions on mixed marriages. The next great advance should be to bring together clergy of all denominations locally where desirable so that they could work out in practice What it meant to look after the spiritual needs of the mixed marriage family.
The Commission was working to find a way in which baptism could be mutually recognised among Christians, said the spokesman, and hoped eventually to provide the bishops with detailed proposals.
The Commission felt that the great difficulty was that though this rite was officially laid down in the service books of most denominations, individual Clergy might not recognise this as having the same binding authority as Catholic clergy did.
MAJOR MEETING The Commission heard that there is to be a major meeting of 400 leading figures (bishops, priests and laity) drawn from all denominations. It will take place at the Selly Oak Colleges in Birmingham in September 1972, Catholics may also share a platform with Methodists When Methodists have their national mission in 1972.
The Commission adopted as its own a resolution referred to it by the Ecumenical Conference at Coloma College, London, in July. By eleven votes to two (the large number of expert advisers on the Commission do not vote) the Cornmission resolved that "Noncommunicating participation in each other's Eucharists fosters union, and should be more encouraged."