The US version of the Ordinariate will begin on January 1, 2012. A congregation that is associated with Bishop Jack Iker in Fort Worth TX has informed Bishop Iker that they intend to become part of the ordinariate and sever their bond with him.
From the press release posted on the “Anglo Catholic blog”:
“The Bishop’s Committee of St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church, a mission congregation of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth, has informed Bishop Jack Iker that they wish to join the U.S. Anglican Ordinariate of the Roman Catholic Church when the Ordinariate begins functioning on Jan. 1, 2012. The Rev. Christopher Stainbrook, vicar of the church, intends to resign from the ordained ministry in order to seek admission to holy orders within the Ordinariate.[…]Bishop Iker has asked that an open forum be held on Dec. 11 with the entire congregation, and, one week later, that a vote be taken to determine the will of the members. This will provide a benchmark number so that the Bishop can make provision for worship and pastoral ministry to that portion of the congregation that will be staying in the Diocese.
Bishop Iker said, “While we regret that many members of St. Timothy’s feel called at this time to leave our fellowship for the Roman Catholic Church, we respect their conscience and spiritual discernment in this matter. We live in a very conflicted time in the life of the Church, and it is important to maintain charity and patience with one another. We wish them well, in the name of the Lord.””
There’s been significant speculation regarding how many congregations associated with Bishop Iker in Texas might decide to enter the Ordinariate. This is the first that has started the formal process.
Initially Bishop Iker resisted allowing congregations to join the Ordinariate claiming that the property issues being litigated with the Episcopal Church meant that there was no way to release the property. Apparently that didn’t prevent a number of priests, including his own Canon to the Ordinary, from beginning the process of converting to Rome anyway.
George Conger has coverage of the same news here. In his article he reports that Iker is claiming to still being inhibited from making any decisions regarding St. Timothy’s property.