Thinking Anglicans

Women Bishops: open letter in favour

Over a thousand clergy of the Church of England have signed an open letter to The Independent urging the General Synod to vote in favour of women bishops in Tuesday’s ballot. The letter, with a complete list of signatories, is here: Open Letter: The Biblical case for women bishops.

Daniel Goddard, Gerard Brand, Jonathan Brown and Kunal Dutta write about the letter in the Independent: Clergy demand women bishops ahead of General Synod.

The Telegraph also reports on the letter: Church of England General Synod: women bishop vote in balance as row looms.

There are other news items previewing the debate.

Telegraph John Bingham Top female cleric urges backing for ‘imperfect’ women bishops deal

BBC Michael Buchanan Church of England to vote on women bishops

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RevDaveTim ChestertonTom DownsJPJeremy Recent comment authors
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Jeremy
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Jeremy

“Those who wish to avoid the ministry of women will still be able legally to do so.” (from the open letter)

The recent news out of South Carolina counsels strongly against permitting theological enclaves.

JP
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JP

While I’m in favour of women bishops, I’m not sure quoting Galatians out of context and pointing out that Jesus was nice to women forms a Biblical case for it.

Tom Downs
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Tom Downs

Back in the 70’s the Episcopal Church also made allowances for those who would not accept women in leadership. One of the consequences of that decision was that it tended to created ghettos around bishops who refused to accept ordained women. These dioceses became over time more and more unwilling to be part of the Episcopal Church. The bulk of these are in the 5 large groups that have left to form new dioceses outside the Episcopal Church.

Tim Chesterton
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As someone pointed out that letter needs some editing. There are a number of signatures that appear twice.

I agree with JP, too. I’m in favour of female bishops (I serve in a diocese with one, in fact), but if this is ‘the biblical case’, it’s very thin. I would have thought a thousand bright theological minds could come up with something better than this.

RevDave
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RevDave

Although I’m for women’s ministry I agre with JP that a couple of biblical quotes, taken out of context, are hardly knock-down arguments.. especially as St Paul was the very one who taught that men and women are “one in Christ” AND he was also the one who instructed the churches that leaders/episcopoi should be male!!!