Thinking Anglicans

still more on women bishops

Updated Friday evening

Last week’s Church Times contained many letters responding to the article about sacramental assurance by Canon Simon Killwick which was linked here earlier.

These letters are now available at RC disapproval undermines sacramental assurance.

The Irish Times recently carried a letter from Canon Dr Virginia Kennerley which was published under the title Women’s ordination.

…On reading the Synod reports it struck me that the demand for “sacramental assurance” – the guarantee that the priest celebrating the Eucharist has not been ordained by a woman bishop, or even by a bishop originally ordained by a woman – is a demonstration of “magical thinking” at its most primitive, akin to ritual rain-making ceremonies and tribal rituals designed to control the uncontrollable…

This letter refers to a sermon on the same theme by Canon Kennerley, delivered at Christ Church Dublin a few days earlier.

Update

The G2 section of the Guardian carried this feature article last Monday: Women bishops of the future?

As the Church of England moves ever closer to allowing the ordination of women bishops, three woman [sic] priests talk about what it would mean to them.

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Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

It’s Gnosticism!

Robert Ian Williams
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Robert Ian Williams

An interesting sermon from the Protestant anti- Romanist Church of Ireland, adapted to the mores of the 21st century. Given by an English woman in an Irish Anglican cathedral , whose Dean is a former Catholic priest who left to get married. In the sermon it is mentioned that the Church of Ireland consented to women bishops 20 years ago and still does not have women bishops, because they have to be elected. That’s one reason for keeping the present Church of England selection system ,as once women bishops are approved it will be much easier for the women to… Read more »

Father Ron Smith
Guest
Father Ron Smith

Prebendary Desmond Tillyer’s fine letter to the Church Times expresses what many Anglo-Catholics in Churches around the world feel about the need – or otherwise – of Roman Catholic approval of Anglican Orders as they have been received and acted upon through time and experience of the grace of the Holy Spirit at work in Anglicanism. The fact that Rome steadfastly denies (in their opinion) the validity of Anglican Orders, only serves to validate our traditional position as a catholic and reformed branch of the Apostolic Church. To be seen to ‘give in’ to Roman Catholic efforts to proselytise Anglicans… Read more »

Bill Dilworth
Guest

“That’s one reason for keeping the present Church of England selection system ,as once women bishops are approved it will be much easier for the women to be chosen and selected.”

And easier for those opposed to WO to claim that women couldn’t possibly make it without help. No, I’d change the system if it were up to me.

“Even in TEC the odds against women and gay candidates are heavily stacked against them, due to the electoral system.”

That would depend very much on the individual diocese, wouldn’t it?

Sara MacVane
Guest
Sara MacVane

It would be good if those who wish others to avoid ‘bashing’ set a good example by avoiding it themselves.

Simon Dawson
Guest
Simon Dawson

Goran,

Could you please expand on your “It’s Gnosticism” comment. I would be intersted to hear what exactly was Gnostic in this currect debate, and why?

Thank you

Simon Dwason

Rod Gillis
Guest
Rod Gillis

Ian R. Williams ended a post with “Can we have some discussion of this , rather than Rome bashing!”

Well Ian, anyone-bashing is not a good thing; but looking at your posts, from a Roman Catholic, using Rome as a norm, and your posture towards Anglican issues as expressed on this site, you might want to take some responsibility for the ailment you protest about?

Robert Ian Williams
Guest
Robert Ian Williams

Oh I just want you to think…but when the Catholic Church is attacked by Ron, I shall respond in love and charity.

mynsterpreost (= David Rowett)
Guest

Perhaps it’s a comment at 90 degrees to the conversation, but I can’t imagine how a priest in Anglican orders (or Anglican “orders” if RIW prefers;-) ) can seek ordination in the RC tradition without a sense of betrayal of his (and it would be his) people. I could cope with being a lay RC if calvinistic elements in the Anglican tradition were to win the day – but to seek ordination would be tantamount to proclaiming that every mass I’ve offered (and more significantly, every confession I’ve heard) are pretences and playing. I owe my people more fidelity than… Read more »

Hector
Guest
Hector

The RC Church disapproval of women bishops would have a great deal more credibility if they acknowledged the validity of Anglican priesthood to begin with. They consider _all_ Anglican priests to be glorified laypeople in nice clothes, so I don’t see what the difference is, in their eyes, between a male Fake Priest and a woman Fake Priest. I respect the RC church a lot and they’re entitled to their opinion, certainly, but by the fact of joining or remaining in the Anglican Church, we are implicitly agreeing with the principle that Rome can be wrong, even about such important… Read more »

Pluralist
Guest

Careful with the magic talk. To dismiss magic in some areas might undermine the ‘magic’ in others that some would like to keep.

When you are ‘in’ on some magic, walking round the back, you are rapidly in on all of it.

Robert Ian Williams
Guest
Robert Ian Williams

Hector the reason for the seeming inconsistency… is that , yes Anglican male orders are invalid, but if the Anglican Communion had reconciled…. these orders could have been corrected by re-ordination. However it is impossible for a woman to be ordained.

The Anglican communion ever true to its Protestant roots has taken the “logical” Protestant path.

William Tighe
Guest
William Tighe

‘The Anglican communion ever true to its Protestant roots has taken the “logical” Protestant path.’

Meissen, Porvoo, Fetter Lane, Ruilly and others yet to come – spot on.

Clive
Guest
Clive

Fr. Ron: I don’t think you will see anyone asked to renounce their orders by Rome as the C of E will require anyone leaving to abandon their orders prior to their being received as laypeople into the RC churches. Having been present at several reception ceremonies for former Anglican priests who left the C of E in 1992 to 1994, I can also categorically say that they were never asked to deny previous ministry, but rather to regard their future ordinations as the perfection of it. Cardinal Basil Hume preached several very moving sermons on this theme and explicitly… Read more »

Rod Gillis
Guest
Rod Gillis

Robert Ian Williams, I just noticed my mistake in getting your name wrong. My apologies. This is what happens when I get trigger happy. ( : -Rod

Hector
Guest
Hector

Re: these orders could have been corrected by re-ordination Which would have involved submission to all that the RC church believes and teaches. No thanks. Most Anglicans, priests and laypeople alike, are more interested in staying Anglican then in becoming RC. I am all for ‘reconciling’ if that means living together in concord and friendship, and learning from each other, but I don’t want to be Roman Catholic; if I did, I would simply convert (or more likely, I’d never have converted to Anglicanism in the first place). To be an Anglican is to concede that Rome can be wrong.… Read more »

Bill Dilworth
Guest

“Fr. Ron: I don’t think you will see anyone asked to renounce their orders by Rome as the C of E will require anyone leaving to abandon their orders prior to their being received as laypeople into the RC churches.”

The very fact that they were re-ordained, and not conditionally ordained, would seem to be a de facto renunciation.

Robert Ian Williams
Guest
Robert Ian Williams

A friend of mine who is a Catholic Bishop assures me that Rome make very careful choice of who they will accept for ordination from convert clerics. By the way we have also accepted Methodist ministers and, Presbyterians and Lutherans. With the Anglicans they are all made to admit intheir personal sunbmissions to Rome that they do not accept the validity of their previous orders, as otherwise it would be a sacrilege to have then unconditionally ordained. Again we distinguish between their former ministry and Holy order. In some rare cases an Anglican , can show like Doctor Leonard did… Read more »

Father Ron Smith
Guest
Father Ron Smith

” However it is impossible for a woman to be ordained.” – Robert I. Williams – This is just one more bit of evidence that R.I.W has capitulated completely to the Roman Catholic understanding of the integrity of Holy Orders. What he needs to understand – if he is going to continue to try to teach us anything on this blog – is that most of us are actually ‘Thinking Anglicans’; which mean – per se – that we do not necessarily agree with his understanding of the call of God upon the Baptized to share in the ministry of… Read more »

Tobias Haller
Guest

Thank you, Fr. Ron Smith. This reminds me of the old story of the bishop who was asked, “Do you believe in infant baptism?” and responded, “Believe in it? I’ve _seen_ it!”

Bill Dilworth
Guest

“Also note that Rome are now becoming doubtful about Old Catholic Orders…”

Heavens! How *will* the Old Catholics muddle through without approval from the Vatican?

PeterK
Guest
PeterK

“The participating Old Catholic bishop merely participated in the laying on of hands at an episcopal consecration.”

Robert Ian Williams, I do not believe that your information is correct. Do you have any proofs?

Chris Smith
Guest
Chris Smith

Vatican II recognized that a radical “reformation” of Catholicism was needed. They called it “renewal” in most instances. People like Robert Ian Williams are in for a rude awakening when the next progressive thinker happens to be elected as Bishop of Rome. Most Catholics I know expect this to happen and when it does, either a Vatican III will happen or the groundwork for radical reform started at Vatican II will resume its’ natural process of bringing the Catholic Church into the modern world. It is very important to understand that the past thirty two years of Catholicism have tried… Read more »

JCF
Guest
JCF

I hope you are correct, Chris Smith.

However, Rome needs to understand that it ought to recognize Anglican orders (ALL of those called to them!) for *Rome’s* (and Christian unity’s) sake, not ours.

***

“according to the Anglican rite, where the words are voided of their true Catholic meaning, because even with modern Anglican ordination rites they are still in the context of the 39 articles and other heretical developments.”

Sell it all you want to, RIW: we ain’t buying.

Lois Keen
Guest
Lois Keen

Father Ron, I understand RIW to mean, when he writes, ” However it is impossible for a woman to be ordained”, that even though I have been ordained, with all the right words and the bishop and clergy laying on hands, I am still not ordained because, as Bp. Iker was understood to say, I am not of fit matter for the ordination to “take”. I am willing to be corrected by RIW if that was not his meaning.

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

Simon Dawson, In this context mainly the identification of outer with inner, of form with essence, of Gender with this notion of “sacramental assurance”.

Malcolm+
Guest

RIW simply repeats 115 year old talking points from that utter fid Merry del Val who, with Vaughn and Manning and the lot, had sold poor Leo XIII a bill of goods that a condemnation of Anglican orders would open a floodgate of conversions. But to the matter of the Dutch Touch, it really wasn’t necessary. Even if one accepts the dubious proposition that the Edwardian Ordinal was defective, even the curial theologians conceded that the Jacobean revisions, minor though they were, were sufficient to correct those deficiencies. From 1604, the curial argument is not that the rite was invalid,… Read more »

William Tighe
Guest
William Tighe

“Even if one accepts the dubious proposition that the Edwardian Ordinal was defective, even the curial theologians conceded that the Jacobean revisions, minor though they were, were sufficient to correct those deficiencies.”

There were no “Jacobean revisions” to the Ordinal; no revisions of it at all until 1661, so Antonio de Dominis is a perfectly red herring.

Robert Ian Williams
Guest
Robert Ian Williams

Several challenges..here are my replies… lois I don’t doubt your sincerity or integrity, but I have to obey the magisterium of the Church I know to be the voice of Christ…which says a woman cannot be ordained, and an Anglican male priest also is not a priest. Chris. interesting thinking.but I think the next Pope is going to be even more conservative and tougher.Everything points in that direction…. vocations , growing orthodox religious orders, tightening of the liturgy,cooling of ecumenism with liberal Protestantism,sounder bishops, hope for reconciliation with the Lefevrists. Liberal orders and vocations imploding.Funny how the liberals thought the… Read more »

Pluralist
Guest

Is the above discussion any evidence why theology might be leaving the universities?

Simon Sarmiento
Guest

I’ve decided not to approve a whole slew of comments on this thread which has veered from the subject of women bishops to the separate subject of the “validity” of Anglican orders.

If anybody still wants to comment specifically on women bishops, feel free. But I regard the “validity” topic as a dead horse, sorry.