Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
February 9, 2009
Regina priest honoured by archbishop of Canterbury
Bolen is international leader in ecumenical dialogue
Msgr. Donald Bolen
BY SIMON CALDWELL
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE
LONDON — The spiritual head of the worldwide Anglican Communion has honoured a Western Canadian Catholic priest for his service to ecumenism.
Anglican Archbishop Rowan Williams of Canterbury awarded Msgr. Donald Bolen the Cross of St. Augustine in recognition of his work in the field of Anglican-Catholic relations.
Williams bestowed the honour on Bolen during a private audience in Lambeth Palace, the archbishop’s residence, in early November.
“The archbishop paid warm tribute to the theological acumen and spiritual discernment that Msgr. Bolen had put unreservedly at the service of Anglican-Roman Catholic relations during his seven-year assignment to the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity in Rome,” said a Feb. 3 statement from Lambeth Palace.
Bolen, a priest of the Archdiocese of Regina, served as the Vatican’s officer for relations with the Anglican Communion and the World Methodist Council between 2001 and 2008 while working for the pontifical council.
He has been an international leader in Catholic dialogue with the Anglican and Methodist churches.
Currently, Bolen holds the Jesuit Father Peter W. Nash Chair in Religion at Campion College at the University of Regina. This summer he is expected to resume parish ministry in the archdiocese.
The Cross of St. Augustine was founded by Anglican Archbishop Michael Ramsey of Canterbury and was first awarded by him in 1965.
It is a circular medallion bearing a replica of the eighth-century cross of Canterbury. On the reverse side is an engraving of the throne of St. Augustine in Canterbury Cathedral.
Each year the cross is awarded to a small number of clergy and laypeople who have given long and distinguished service to the Church of England or within the Anglican Communion.
Occasionally it is awarded to members of other Christian denominations. The awards are made at the discretion of the archbishop of Canterbury.