THINKING ANGLICANS

Code of Practice?

The April issue of New Directions contains two articles on the proposed form of legislation for women as bishops in the Church of England.

  • David Nichol is worried that the Bishops and Synod are placing far too much hope in a Code of Practice and do not understood how opposed many of us are, see Never a code!
  • The Revd Dr Miranda Threlfall-Holmes, member of General Synod, explains her own understanding of the value and difficulties of a Code of Practice, see Single Clause or Code?

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RoystonBromenblueFather EdGöran Koch-SwahneFather Ron Smith Recent comment authors
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Rev L Roberts
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Rev L Roberts

I have no idea what David Nichol means. It seems to stand everything on its head. How can the porposed solutions be sexist ? How can rejecting a woman bishop (or other minister) be like supporting a black vicar ? Concessions should never have been offered when women’s ordination came in (in 1993 I think ?). John Habgood’s Act of Synod has ahd disastrous consequences. It has encouraged these people to think they are owed something (yet more)from the Church of England. Rev Nichol and co-religionists are destroying the viability and credability of ‘the Catholic tradition in the C of… Read more »

JCF
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JCF

David Nichol: “Or, maybe, with other options closed, I would go to an ordinary Church of England church, under a woman bishop perhaps, and even a woman priest every week. I would continue to pray and to worship, though I would never receive communion again.”

This . . . what I can only term *idolatry* of the Y-chromosome, will simply never make any sense to me.

Bromenblue
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Bromenblue

“It has encouraged these people to think they are owed something (yet more) from the Church of England”. May I remind you, Reverend Roberts, that “these people” you refer to have been faithful Church of England members for many years. As one of “those people” on the receiving end of so-called concessions, I find such a statement as yours very antagonistic. How long has the Church of England been ordaining women? It is a very recent innovation, as you yourself recognise, and yet you seem to suggest that, somehow, proponents of the whole adventure, such as yourself, have commanded majority… Read more »

Father Ron Smith
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Father Ron Smith

“To institutionalize sexism, in order to gain a greater good for women, seems (and I dare to say it even though I am not a woman) a most dangerous precedent. I seem to remember a bishop issuing a decree some years back, that if anyone asked for a white minister to take a funeral, instead of the black incumbent, that request should be politely but unequivocally rejected. Surely, the same principle applies here?” – David Nichol – While it may be difficult to assess from his article whether David Nichol is actually in favour of women bishops or not, his… Read more »

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

“May I remind you, Reverend Roberts, that “these people” you refer to have been faithful Church of England members for many years.”

“Faithful”? In what sense? They seem rebellious to me 🙁

Rev L Roberts
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Rev L Roberts

Ok so this innovation ‘only’ came in England, 16 years ago, what difference does that make ? Surely, once the decision to ordain has been made, then the decison has been made ? How can it both be made and not be made ? I will ask, what concession(s) did the opponents of the inclusion of women in ordained ministry offer to women wanting to test a vocation ? And to those of us who wished to see them tested? Or those women (and men) who felt a need to be ministered to by women? Answer : Absolutely Nothing was… Read more »

Mark Wharton
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Mark Wharton

Göran Koch-Swahne:
rebellious- How?

Ed Tomlinson
Guest

Rebelliosus- Goran?? Let us examine the facts 1) First women ordained in America as an ILLEGAL act…wow that was calm and obedient! 2) VGR – ordained in total defiance of Anglican teaching. Be careful what labels you hurl about. I would argue that the ‘progressives’ within the Church have been FAR more rebellious and naughty than the ‘traditionalists’. That is not to say we haven’t had our naughty days. I would also suggest that Bromenblau makes a very valid point. The term I might use is identity theft- whereby those claiming the term ‘Anglicanism’ in our day are transforming the… Read more »

Father Ron Smith
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Father Ron Smith

“Be careful what labels you hurl about. I would argue that the ‘progressives’ within the Church have been FAR more rebellious and naughty than the ‘traditionalists'” – Ed Tomlinson – Ed, you only have to go back to the beginnings of Jesus’ ministry in Palestine to see how he was reviled for his ‘progressive’ initiatives (especially in his attitude towards women) which counteracted significant shibboleths of the Law – as practised by the Scribes and Pharisees. To say that the liberalisation of Church polity in the matter of extending the privilege of priestly or episcopal ordination to women is in… Read more »

Fr Mark
Guest
Fr Mark

Ed Tomlinson: “The term I might use is identity theft- whereby those claiming the term ‘Anglicanism’ in our day are transforming the church into something that would have been unrecognisable 60yrs ago.” Now, Father, that’s not a very good argument, is it? If you compare “Anglican” identity in, say, 1950, 1850, 1750, 1650, 1550, 1450 and so on, could you ever find one century in which that identity wasn’t transformed into something enormously different? Fear of change is not a theological, but a psychological principle. As Newman famously said in the Essay on Development, “Here below to live is to… Read more »

Rev L Roberts
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Rev L Roberts

I wish FiF would be rebellious — kick over the traces. Launch out. Live dangerously …

… They could ordain more bishops of their own, with no problem, and then do their own rebellious thing ! Then they could have celibacy and the Roman rite, and everything their hearts could desire.

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

Why I find it Rebellious?

Because not accepting the Order of the Church, not accepting Episcopé, not accepting Creation, not accepting God’s Image, not accepting the Incarnation, not accepting the Gospel.

Rebelling against all that, and decency, cf real estate thefts in USA.

Is that enough?

Rev L Roberts
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Rev L Roberts

‘…something that would have been unrecognisable 60yrs ago.”

Or someone I have changed so much over 60 years that I am myself more or less unrecognizable now. I am still me and my name unchanged.

Koan: “What is your true, original face
befoe your parents were born ?

Royston
Guest
Royston

“Jesus was crucified for his progressive theology” – Fr Ron.

Goodness, and I was thinking that it was for the sins of the world… On a serious note, whatever our belief about this or that issue, it’s jolly dangerous to reduce Jesus to simply a proponent of our own views, whatever part of the spectrum they fall in. Jesus wasn’t crucified for His progressive treatment of women, but for who He was, if it was simply for His politics, then so what? I’d rather stay in bed on a Sunday morning, if that was all it’s about.

Bromenblue
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Bromenblue

The attitude of progressives and liberals on this site is both frightening and disturbing in terms of the lack of respect they accord to those who have a different view to their own, especially in matters of faith and doctrine. I am glad to say that they are not representative of most mainstream Christians in the Church of England, displaying, as they do, incredible levels of ignorance, intolerance and bigotry, which, I might add, they so often accuse Anglo-Catholics and Conservative Evangelicals of. You should feel ashamed of yourselves.

Josh L.
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Josh L.

“Jesus was crucified for his progressive theology”

Try again!

Father Ron Smith
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Father Ron Smith

Bromenblue; What about us dyed-in-the-wool Anglo-Catholics who are also progressive and mindful of the need for women and men to be co-heirs of the ministry of the priesthood? Are we to be dismissed so lightly by your accusations of bigotry and ignorance? I guess my feelings about what the Church needs today are as logical and theological as your own. Let’s enjoy the fruits of the Death and Resurrection of Christ together!

Father Ron Smith
Guest
Father Ron Smith

“Jesus wasn’t crucified for His progressive treatment of women, but for who He was, if it was simply for His politics, then so what? I’d rather stay in bed on a Sunday morning, if that was all it’s about.” – Royston – Having, during my time as a parish priest, got out of bed every morning to greet the Lord of Glory in the Eucharist, I don’t quite see where your argument is going. I believe that one of the sins Jesus died to redeem us all from was our intransigence in refusing to believe that Jesus came also to… Read more »

Bromenblue
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Bromenblue

I’m sorry, Father Smith, but I’m going to show a litle of that bigotry you yourself so often display and say “Anglo-Catholic” is a misnomer when applied to Christians with views like your own. Both progressive and liberal fit the bill very well for you, given some of the theological argument you embrace. And on another point, you never came back to me about the celibacy point when we last dialogued!Perhaps you just didn’t have an answer?

Fr Mark
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Fr Mark

My, my, Bromenblue, you’re very jumpy.

I’m an Anglo-Catholic, and I just don’t agree with you about women priests. (Nor, in my experience, do most Roman Catholics.) There are plenty of Anglo- (and Roman) Catholics who are “progressives and liberals”: people don’t divide up as neatly as you would apparently like us to.

Mark Wharton
Guest
Mark Wharton

I am opposed to the ordination of women for theological reasons and as such I am supported, as are those who support the innovation, by resolution 111.2 of the Lambeth Conference 1998, which says “that those who dissent from, as well as those who assent to the ordination of women to the priesthood and episcopate are both loyal Anglicans”. I do not know whether in the course of time I will come the accept the innovation; (I may be wrong) we do not know where the Sprit is leading us. What worries me more, is there seems to be no… Read more »

Rev L Roberts
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Rev L Roberts

A word of caution on ‘the vilifed by Pharisees and Scribes’ angle ! Although this is the impression given in the gospels, we must remember that the historicity of this is questionable. It may well reflect the conflict between Synagogue and Church at the time the gospels were being put together. We know some religous leaders (Nicchodemus representing them perhaps) were open to Jesus, and others more neutral. Wew risk knocking Judaism with this kind of rhetoric. I know it is traditional Church stuff and still common-place, in Britain –even after the Holocaust.I think it needs re-visiting. I am sure… Read more »

Father Ed
Guest

Ok! A few responses: 1) Ron- Jesus was not killed for being progressive. Nor was he in ANY way innovative. As he himself told us He came to fulfill and not change the law. He then left us with a covenant…which every Eucharist reminds us…is the final thing for all creation. The revelation is complete in Jesus (not being completed but actually complete) – not one iota will need to be added for in Jesus Christ all is made new. 2) Mark I do not fear change. It is something I am willing and able to embrace- I was once… Read more »

Fr Mark
Guest
Fr Mark

Fr Ed (& Bromenblue): I think it is a terrible mistake to get into this game of judging people as being less Catholic because of their views on the ordination of women or gay people. In my experience, the RC laity in England, who cannot be said to be less Catholic than any Anglo-Cats, are, by a vast majority, in favour of both WO and accepting gay people’s relationships. See Tony Blair’s comments in the press today http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/7987566.stm His views are shared by his cradle Catholic wife. Further, Fr Ed, to say “What i do fear is NON-BIBLICAL change” is… Read more »

Bromenblue
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Bromenblue

Father Mark, I’m not jumpy at all, it’s simply that when reading some of the contributions on this site, some of the homemade theology staggers me. But what’s worse is the lack of simple Christian charity displayed by some of the more vociferous liberals. I’d also dare to venture that it’s perhaps an oxymoron to suggest you’re Catholic and in the next breath say you support the ordination of women as priests/bishops. Where does that leave Roman Catholicism or Eastern Orthodoxy which constitute by far the greatest part of the Church Catholic, of which Anglo-Catholics would normally claim to be… Read more »

Fr Mark
Guest
Fr Mark

Bromenblue: “Where does that leave Roman Catholicism or Eastern Orthodoxy which constitute by far the greatest part of the Church Catholic, of which Anglo-Catholics would normally claim to be part?” It leaves them, perhaps, as systems where there are huge dysfunctions: in the former, between the sensus fidelium and the line spouted by their low-quality leadership; in the latter, between an inadequately backward-looking (and frighteningly nationalist/racist) view of society incompatible with the rest of modern Europe, and on the other hand young educated Greeks/Cypriots/Russians desparate to escape its restrictive force. “Homemade theology” is common to all views, and perhaps it… Read more »

Fr Mark
Guest
Fr Mark

And, Bromenblue, women’s ordination is just so much NOT the big issue among RCs and Orthodox: the Anglican conservatives’ obsessive hatred of it is a terrible distortion of Catholicism. Catholicism is about so many other positive things, things that are worth confidently sharing with the wider Church and society, that the gender of the celebrant is such a stupid issue to make a big deal of. To restrict the breadth of our Catholic faith to the question of how “sound” someone is on women’s ordination is tragic, and the kind of navel-gazing that is consigning Anglo-Catholicism to the margins in… Read more »

Father Ron Smith
Guest
Father Ron Smith

“The revelation is complete in Jesus (not being completed but actually complete) – not one iota will need to be added for in Jesus Christ all is made new.” – Bromenblue on Wednsday – I wonder, Bromenblue, what you make of the reference to Jesus in the Gospels telling his followers that “When the Spirit comes, he will LEAD YOU into all the truth – about me, about sin” This does sound a little like a progressive plan of revelation, does it not? Or do you believe, like some of the re-asserters, that God has nothing left to say, and… Read more »

Father Ron Smith
Guest
Father Ron Smith

“I’d also dare to venture that it’s perhaps an oxymoron to suggest you’re Catholic and in the next breath say you support the ordination of women as priests/bishops.” – Bromenblue – To me, the oxymoronic category is that in which you would try to put together that which is ‘catholic’ with that which is ‘exclusive’, as F.i.F. appears to do with its insistence on male only clergy. do let’s be consistent – as well as truthful and generous. In saying this, I am very mindful of the fact that, as a member of the *Catholic* wing of the Anglican Church,… Read more »

Father Ed
Guest

Ron – it was me not Brem- but the point that the spirit will lead us into truth is surely a reference of how God will bring us into relationship with him? I cannot see how it is a licence to defend changes in established Christian doctrine. The Spirit will lead us – sinners that we are- to Jesus, the revelation once and for all. How does the fact that we are being led -by the SPirit- in any way suggest we get to change the faith of Christ crucified…I cannot see that at all. If Christ’s message were not… Read more »

Father Ron Smith
Guest
Father Ron Smith

Ed, with the utmost respect; if all were complete – as you have here suggested, then what is God waiting for? Rather, it may be that we have not yet entered into the fullness of the salvation that Christ has already secured for us. It is not God whose action is lacking – but ours, both mine and yours, who have not yet lived into the truth of Christ’s inclusivity in the Gospel. I really am with Bp. Desmond Tutu on this; that Jesus said that he would draw ALL people to himself – not by force of Law, but… Read more »

Father Ed
Guest

You answer your own question. God waits to give us the utmost chance to accept the divine revelation that came to us in Christ Jesus. To submit to that living Word and humbly obey.

Which- as my point remains- requires us not to challenge or change one iota of that revelation.

Fr Mark
Guest
Fr Mark

Fr Ed: “Which- as my point remains- requires us not to challenge or change one iota of that revelation.” Aren’t you making a bit of a leap, though, to assume that a specific gender-bar on clergy is really a part of the divine revelation for all time?

Erika Baker
Guest
Erika Baker

Fr Ed
The full verse you quote from is:
“I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth.”

Doesn’t that make it clear that Jesus hasn’t yet revealed everything and that the Spirit will have new things to teach us, as and when we’re ready for them?

Rev L Roberts
Guest
Rev L Roberts

Glad to have taken someone’s breath away – I guess ! Though unsure how or why. We are all free to choose a different denomination than one that has women ministers, if we feel sufficently deeply about it. Oh I forget, it is purely theological. All the more reason to choose then ,I imagine. By staying you are accepting the way the denomination is going. You can voice your views of course, as FiF have no trouble doing. But what is unreasonable and I think very wrong, is to expect women ministers to be disadvantaged / sacrifeced to accomodate your… Read more »

Rev L Roberts
Guest
Rev L Roberts

‘You quite rightly off the top of your head highlight other grave issues which we rightly denounce. Firstly on matters sexual and secondly in defence of Catholic orders within the Church.’ Posted by: Father Ed on Wednesday, 8 April 2009 at 10:06am BST I object to the tendency of anglo-catholics in general and FiF in partic to say one thing about gayness and do the opposite. It is very disillusioning. Scandalous really. Btw I wasn’t sure what I’d written to take away your breath. It wasn’t clear to me. I don’t know what the point was about ‘Catholic orders in… Read more »

Father Ed
Guest

Ok- a few responses. To L Roberts (are you the one who attended Westcott with me?): 1) Over stressing the gay issue in relationship to Anglo-Catholicism may help your cause but does not actually correlate with my experience. I am married happily, as is my nearest FIF neighbour and the vast majority in my SSC chapter. The Bishops of Fulham, Richborough, Beverley and Ebbsfleet are all married men. Indeed the only very openly gay clergy I have encountered in great numbers have been in Affcaff circles. Furthermore the personal behaviour of individual priests is not what is relevant. FIF has… Read more »

JCF
Guest
JCF

Sigh.

Mutual incomprehensibilities:

1) To define “Catholic” apart from how (our numerical superiors) the RCs and EOs define it.

2) To posit WO as something “which could still be rejected by the wider church”—when so many EXPERIENCE its blessedness every day.

I have no answers for these mutual incomprehensibilities. I just state them for what they are. [And, if any doubted, I’m one who rejects 1) as irrelevent, and emphatically endorses 2) as obvious.]

We glorify you O Christ, and we bless you, for by Your cross you have redeemed the world…

Father Ron Smith
Guest
Father Ron Smith

“3) Fr. Mark, it is not a huge leap. It is a decision backed by the Council of Nicea, Jesus choice to call only men to the office of Apostle (despite an equal calling of men and women as disciples), the teaching and practice of the church throughout the ages” – Father Ed – Ed, you obviously chose to not take any notice of my suggestion that Mary Magdalene – a woman – was the first post-Resurrection bearer of the Good News (an Apostle) of Christ’s Resurrection: to the male Apostles. A tiny incident maybe in the Gospels, but quite… Read more »

Father Ed
Guest

I would ask you to consider that Mary Magdalene in taking news of Jesus to others is acting as an EVANGELIST. She is not fuctioning in any sacramental manner nor is she added to the 12 Apostles, whose ministry was set apart from the disciples.

For the record I am 100% behind female lay evangelists. They would do well to draw inspiration from the passage of scripture you mention.

Bromenblue
Guest
Bromenblue

Father Mark, your comments are reprehensible, when you talk about repressed subcultures and the like. Now that really is demeaning the arguments and lacks completely any intellectual rigour. What on earth are you suggesting by your comment about camping it up outrageouly in a male only club environment?? And by linking this to Anglo Catholicism’s rejection of the ordination of women? I think you’ve lost the plot!

Father Ron Smith
Guest
Father Ron Smith

So, Father Ed., is not presiding at the Eucharist one of the tasks of the evangel? If you really want to precisely separate the ministries of apostolate and evangelism, and want to be pedantic, then the Apostle is, plainly, one who is sent. This is precisely the case with Mary Magdalene, who saw ‘sent’ by Jesus to take the mesdsage of the Resurrwection (the Evangel) to Peter and his merry men. The fact that they did not believe the message – as being delivered by a woman – indicates their cultural unreadiness to accept the word of a woman. This… Read more »

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

“In the end, most of us (in FIF) are opposed to the ordination of women for sound theological reasons”

Again, I have never heard any. Furthermore, I find the whole thing un-sound.

Do give me 5 points!

Father Ed
Guest

Read, mark and inwardly digest. what is offered is the theological objections to WO – which have never been asnwered satisfactorily in my opinion. By which I mean with recourse to scripture and doctrine not sociology coupled with ‘the Spirit is doing a new thing man’ (that just conveniently happens to appease cultural trends and the desires of those expousing them)

So please do put me right. Really I would LOVE to be convinced- it would do my chances of preferment no end of good!

http://sbarnabas.com/blog/theological-objections-to-womens-ordination/

Bromenblue
Guest
Bromenblue

“Again, I have never heard any. Furthermore, I find the whole thing unsound”

You haven’t heard because you refuse to listen!

Royston
Guest
Royston

“For Jesus to have specifically named any woman as an apostle would have caused havoc in both spheres.” – Fr Ron And Our Lord was never known to cause havoc, was He? The high regard that Jesus held women in, and their key involvement in the ‘Jesus Event’, cannot be denied, but someone having an ‘apostolic’ ministry and role, does not simply make them an apostle. In my job, there are many times when I do ‘diaconal’ things, as well as ‘apostolic’ things, in terms of mission, but I am by no means a Deacon or a Bishop! I would… Read more »