From front Catholics and Methodists spent a day in Central Hall. Westminster, discussing one another's position in areas of both agreement and disagreement. It was the first full-day meeting of the newly formed Catholic/Methodist Committee.
A Communique issued by the Committee said "A smaller, more informal body has met regularly since 1968 to facilitate general Catholic/Methodist relations in England. This group was responsible for the publication in 1970
of 'Christian Belief: A Catholic/Methodist statement' (Epworth Press and Living Parish Pamphlets, 15p).
"With the development of Catholic/Methodist relations at world level," the statement continued, "there was a need for a more official national body, and this has now been established with the consent of the Methodist Conference and of the Roman Catholic bishops' Conference. This committee is not a negotiating body, concerned with schemes of union.
"It exists to promote and support Catholic Methodist relations at a local level as part of the wider ecumenical scene in this country: to link work done here in England with that of the International Catholic/Methodist Commission: and to enable our Churches to understand one another's position. "At its meeting last December, the International Commission had asked that England should take up the study of questions concerning Eucharist and the Ministry. A small group has been appointed to begin this study and to report to the next meeting of the full Committee on October 12."
The chairmen of the full Committee are Dr. Harold Roberts and Bishop Mervyn Alexander.
Vatican II 'shook us by our heels'
The Vatican Council had "shaken us by our heels," Bishop McGuinness, Coadjutor of Nottingham said at the annual general meeting of the Nottingham diocese branches of the Catholic Men's Society of Great Britain.
Before that, he continued, they had been "self-satisfied and com fort able."
observers, that Pope Paul intends to raise three of the present Corn missions to Congregations: the Laity, Justice and Peace and the newly created Family.
Cardinal Maurice Roy, Archbishop of Quebec, is President of the first two Commissions but is known to want to withdraw and become more active in his residential archdiocese.
This would create three new active cardinalate-level Prefect positions.
Speculation continues over the other Prefect positions that could be left vacant after the five-year period of office a new Pope Paul 1968 ruling terminates on March 1.
Among these positions is that of Cardinal Franjo Seper, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, who is also known to be ailing.
Furthermore, there is talk that this Congregation,. the Premier Congregation, might also be split into a purely doctrinal "Holy Office" and a Congregation which would deal with the procedural administration detail of appeals from bishops etc. over priestly aberrations.
Cardinal Maximilien dc Furstenberg, Prefect of the Congregation for the Oriental Church, and Cardinal Gabriel Garrotte, Prefect of the Congregation for Catholic Education, will also be completing five year tenures of office.