Thinking Anglicans

New Bishop of Tewkesbury is announced

10 Downing Street has announced:

The Queen has approved the nomination of the Venerable Martyn James Snow, BSc, BTh, MA, Archdeacon of Sheffield and Rotherham in the diocese of Sheffield to the Suffragan See of Tewkesbury, in the Diocese of Gloucester, in succession to the Right Reverend John Stewart Went, MA, on his resignation on 16 April 2013…

The Diocese of Gloucester has The New Bishop of Tewkesbury has been announced.

The Diocese of Sheffield has Archdeacon Martyn Snow appointed as The New Bishop of Tewkesbury.

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Father David
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Father David

How come, to date, the appointment of the Bishop of Ebbsfleet merits 15 comments and the appointment of the Bishop of Tewkesbury garners nil comments? Is it perhaps because Ebbsfleet is an hairy man but Tewkesbury is clear shaven?

Andrew Godsall
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Andrew Godsall

Father David
Maybe that’s because most of us see absolutely no need for a Bishop of Ebbsfleet. They are, after all, in communion with the rest of the bishops and archbishops. So what can be the only reason for the existence of such a peculiar and unCatholic institution as a flying bishop? The offensive notion of taint is the only answer…

John Roch
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John Roch

Also, the Ebbsfleet announcement was posted on here at mid-day, Tewkesbury in the late evening.

I wish our Archdeacon well in his new position.

Father David
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Father David

Canon Godsall Most may not appreciate the need for a Bishop of Ebbsfleet but thankfully Justin Welby does and his website currently includes a most charming photograph of himself with the soon to be consecrated fifth bishop of that see.

Concerned Anglican
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Concerned Anglican

Good for you Canon Godsall for having the courage to post under your own name and speak the truth.

The old argument against ‘Flying Bishops’, usually dismissed by them, is that as it is inconceivable that you would have a Bishop to cater for those who don’t want ethnic minorities in the priesthood (some do exist), so you shouldn’t have one for those who don’t want women.

Anyway, since the Ordinariate there is now absolutely no need whatsoever for the Church of England to go on with this expensive charade of Bishops for those who don’t like women as priests.

Erika Baker
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Erika Baker

Concerned Anglican,
it didn’t require the Ordinariate, there was never any need for alternative episcopal oversight. Anglo-Catholics are, apparently, only concerned with sacramental assurance.
And every single bishop currently in place guarantees that.
Choosing bishops according to their theology is profoundly un-Catholic and should never have happened.

Andrew Godsall is absolutely right – there is no need at all for a Bishop of Ebbsfleet.

David
Guest
David

Spare a prayer for our new bishop of Tewkesbury and this warm friendly diocese with its partnership of women and men in ministry at every level except the episcopate. Why? – because the consecration of our bishop is to be shared with the consecration of the new Bishop of Ebbsfleet! Requests to change this have been turned down It means in particular that those ordained women who wish to attend to honour and support their new bishop will have no option but to share the event side by side with the latest high profile provision for that wing of the… Read more »

Rose
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Rose

But David, if the new Bishop of Ebbsfleet were consecrated in a separate ceremony, it would surely only feed the notion that PEVs are free to be part of a Church within a Church. The planned arrangements make it very clear that the PEV will be part of a Church which ordains women – he will be consecrated by a bishop who has ordained women, alongside a new bishop who will ordain women and in the midst of ordained women. For goodness sake don’t argue for anything less!

Father David
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Father David

Canon Godsell mentions “The offensive notion of taint”! Really, I thought we were all mature enough to have progressed beyond such banal slurs. However in reading David’s comment it would appear that I am wrong in my assumption as he wishes to have a separate consecration for the Bishop of Tewkesbury elect so that the people from the “warm friendly” diocese of Gloucester be liberated from any connection whatsoever with the Bishop elect of Ebbsfleet. Thankfully the powers that be have refused to agree to such an offensive request.

Geoffrey
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Geoffrey

Hear hear to Rose’s posting.

David
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David

Rose You are right and I wish I had waited longer before pressing send! Sorry to those who entered a demanding week with blood pressure levels higher than needed. There is enough heat around. I am also aware that the intention was to make clear that PEVs and their dispersed flock are not a separate church. But once again this kind of institutional thinking is addressed in one direction – as it so often is. If we are serious about two integrities then we might start making decisions and communicating our intentions as if both integrities deserve respect and understanding… Read more »

Father David
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Father David

David I think you are in a better position than I am to answer your own question as it was you who wrote “Requests to change this have been turned down”. Perhaps you can enlighten us all as to who made the requests that the next Bishops of Tewkesbury and Ebbsfleet be not consecrated together at the same act of worship? Or is your original comment either erroneous or a mere supposition? I think we should be told.

David
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David

Fr David You have not answered my question. And why would I make this up? It would be seriously surprising if there were not questions about this scheduling from the Traditionalist side as well. But I don’t need names to believe it. This will be a very uncomfortable gathering for all concerned for very obvious reasons – and perhaps that is as it should be and ++J is right to insist on the sharing of this occasion. I will be there. I will seek the grace this event will need. I will pray for all there and for both bishops.… Read more »

Father David
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Father David

Am I correct in thinking that at one time the authorities at Westminster Abbey refused to host the consecration of a PEV and in response the then Archbishop of Canterbury declined to use the Abbey as a venue for any future episcopal consecrations preferring instead to use St. Paul’s and Southwark cathedrals for such occasions? If that indeed be the case how good it is that both Ebbsfleet and Tewkesbury are to be consecrated together in the Abbey and let us all pray for them both as they begin an exciting new phase in their respective ministries.

John
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John

Father David, Some years ago there was a FiF bash at Durham Cathedral. The then Stephen Conway, as a gesture of goodwill, expressed a desire to attend. He was told he would not be welcome. Some years after that, the then new bishop of Durham, Tom Wright, as a gesture of good will, visited a prominent FiF church in Durham as one of his first acts as new bishop. No prayers were offered for him, in his presence, in contrast to those offered for the non-present bishop of Beverley. There is crassness and boorishness on both sides. Time it stopped,… Read more »

Father Ron Smith
Guest

We, in the far-flung Provinces of the Anglican Communion, are still wondering why the Church of England needs two types of Bishop, to deliver episcopal ministry to two very different types of congregation? This seems to be the continuing ethos of legerdemain: where a small percentage of members can actually pretend that women bishops do not exist in their Church. If this were not so serious a breach of catholic collegiality, it would just be accounted ridiculous. This really perpetuates the sort of hypocrisy that pretends there are no gay clergy in the Church. No wonder we ex-colonials are losing… Read more »

Father David
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Father David

I suppose the answer to David’s earlier question is. The General Synod and the Ecclesiastical Committee of Parliament who voted in favour of provision for those who in all conscience could not accept the innovation of women priests. So the Act of Synod came to birth; alas now moves are afoot to rescind this Act and renage on promises made! Would that we had someone on the current bench as sage as Archbishop Habgood to steer us through the current morass and thus arrive at a happy solution. I would most certainly agree with John – courtesy in all things,… Read more »

Andrew Godsall
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Andrew Godsall

But Father David that doesn’t at all answer the question – why do you need a flying bishop? Why is a bishop who happens to disagree with you unable to minister to and with you? What renders their sacraments unreliable? What have they done to prevent them being a bishop to you?
I’m sure we’d all love to have bishops who simply agreed with us – but we don’t all get to pick and choose.

magistra
Guest

Dear Father David,

I really don’t understand how you can call for “courtesy in all things” and then accuse your opponents of wanting to commit “Ecclesiastical Cleansing” and to “eradicate the other.” Do you not consider such phrases to be impolite?

And if you claim that you must make be allowed to make such statements because they are “the truth”, than can you not accept that your opponents may also consider the harsh words they sometimes say about those opposed to WO to be true?

Father David
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Father David

Canon Godsall – questions, questions , questions. Thankfully I personally am in a position now where I do not need to resort to the ministrations of a Flying Bishop but formerly when I did have cause to resort to their ministry I found their pastoral care to be second to none. In an earlier comment you alluded to the creation of PEVs as being “profoundly un-Catholic”; I can’ t quite see how Flying Bishops who take the doctrine of Apostolic Succession with utmost seriousness as being so? Surely what can be described as being profoundly un-Catholic is the innovation and… Read more »

Father David
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Father David

Magistra – I believe I was referring to mutual “Ecclesiastical Cleansing” – although, at present, those who are in favour of the innovation seem to very much have the upper hand as can be seen in their not wishing to allow any real provision for those with whom they so profoundly disagree. Hopefully, the main thrust of that particular comment was to emphasise the “Better Together” campaign which now, alas, seems to have been placed on the back burner.

Andrew Godsall
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Andrew Godsall

Profoundly unCatholic Fr David because they can’t even be a bishop for the whole of the Church of England, let alone the whole of the wider Church.
But why are other bishops not acceptable? What have they done that renders them unacceptable?

Erika Baker
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Erika Baker

Fr David, every single current bishop has been validly ordained deacon, priest and bishop by another male bishop. Sacramental assurance has never once been in question in the last 20 years. There was never any need at all for Flying Bishops, it was simply a case of wanting (and for some strange reason getting away with) a bishop who agrees with Anglo-Catholics on the ordination of women. The situation will change with women bishops but not before then. And if traditional Anglo-Catholics now find it hard to convince people that they are only motivated by theology and not by the… Read more »

Malcolm French+
Guest

I can actually follow the basic argument for “sacramental assurance.” If one does not accept the validity of women’s ordination, then the sacrament celebrated by a woman (or a man ordained by a woman) would be invalid. What I cannot follow is the (it seems to me) entirely heretical position that sacraments celebrated by a man who accepts the ordination of women are invalid – or at least of dubious validity. Since that argument is obviously nonsense, one is left with an even more curious heresy: that holders of a minority theological position are entitled by right to have a… Read more »

Father David
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Father David

Canon Godsall aren’t the flying bishops just as much bishops of the Church of England as any other bishop having been duly consecrated? Indeed I was truly amazed to see photographs taken at the consecration of the present Bishop of Beverley with such a tremendous array of bishops assisting the Archbishop of York ! Most bishops are restricted to ministering within their own diocese but PEVs operate, as the their name implies, within the context of an entire Province – a much larger area of operation than any other Diocesan or Suffragan bishop. Geographically they are on a par with… Read more »

Andrew Godsall
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Andrew Godsall

Fr David – I don’t think they are just as much a bishop actually because they can’t ordain about half the people who are ordained these days. And they declare themselves out of communion with quite a lot of the Church of England.

You still avoid answering the question but Malcolm and Erika have done so for you.

David
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David

Fr David I am genuinely pleased for you if you experienced high quality care from your bishop. Nor do I doubt for a minute that those chosen to be PEVs are skilled and dedicated pastors. I have friends whose experience of their PEVs has been yours – ‘everything a bishop should be’ is one phrase that recurs. But there are very practical reasons why this may be so. PEVs are not Diocesans. They have no territory (‘See’ or not). They do not carry anything like the oversight or administrative load – locally or nationally – of diocesan bishops. They have… Read more »

Father David
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Father David

Dear Canon Godsall Why are the PEVs out of communion with “quite a lot of the Church of England”? Quite simply because the Church of England has chosen to depart from a centuries old tradition concerning our Catholic understanding of ministry. Alas so many other bishops are now so overburdened with administration that the time allowed for more important episcopal duties is inevitably restricted. Liberated from time consuming diocesan administration our Flying Bishops can devote the majority of their time to actually being and doing what a bishop in the Ordinal and the New Testament expect them to be and… Read more »

Father David
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Father David

In other words, Canon Godsall, both Erika and Malcolm agree with your point of view! However, I don’t think they advance the discussion in a very constructive manner by using such words and phrases as “the misogynistic notion of taint” – “the un-Catholic theology of taint” and the “entirely heretical position” in describing those with whom they disagree. Until we abandon the use of such inflamatory words and phrases then no real progress can be made in finding a solution to this seemingly intractable issue.

Erika Baker
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Erika Baker

Fr David, It’s not entirely fair to refuse to answer Andrew Godsall because I use language you don’t like. But let’s abandon all those words you object to. Let me say that according to my understanding, evangelicals are worried about male headship while Anglo Catholics are worried about sacramental assurance. Why, then, did you need Alternative Episcopal Oversight when every single current bishop is validly ordained? Why, when the CoE Diocesan system means that Liberals, Evangelicals and Anglo-Catholics gather under one Diocesan and have done so without problems since the beginning of the CoE? When you have accepted other episcopal… Read more »

Cynthia
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Cynthia

This alternative episcopate is a big problem. It says that that CoE does not see women as equally created in the image of God, equally called to ministry, and equally deserving of all the dignity and decency inherent in God’s good creation. It is humiliating and unnecessary overkill that undermines CoE on the great moral issue of our time, inequality. The ABC has nothing to say to me about the Good News with that going on. I can’t even begin to express how knowledge of “Flying Bishops” makes me seethe even more on the thought of Rowan’s meddling in our… Read more »

MarkBrunson
Guest

Oh, Erika, Erika!

Have you still not learned that “progress toward a solution” – for conservatives – is “you do what I want?”

Stop trying, already. It’ll just cost soul and sanity.

Father David
Guest
Father David

Erika, I understand that Canon Godsall is perfectly content with the answer to his questions which both you and Malcolm have kindly supplied. However PEVs are needed and necessary simply because the Established Church in altering the make up of the three fold ministry has so dramatically departed from Scripture and Tradition and has thus put itself out of kilter with other great churches with which hitherto we have shared a common understanding of the make up of the ancient three-fold ministry. Congratulations to the next Bishop of Tewkesbury as the comments on the TA blog announcing his appointment now… Read more »

Andrew Godsall
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Andrew Godsall

Obviously Fr David you don’t have any other explanation of the theology of a flying bishop than that which Erika and Malcolm have provided then.
Even if one were to agree with your viewpoint about the Church of Enlgand’s departure, that does not explain why any of the current diocesan bishops are unable to provide episcopal ministry, and so why the flying bishops are necessary. We note your inability to answer this crucial question.

magistra
Guest

Father David, In the sixteenth century, the Church of England decided that celibacy was not required for either priests or bishops. This was contrary to the teaching and practice of the Roman Catholic and Orthodox churches for more than a millennium. (It is irrelevant to say that the Roman Catholic church now allows married priests in some circumstances. It did not do so in the sixteenth century). The sixteenth century C of E did not forbid celibacy to its priests, but it allowed sexually-active married priests, and it made no provision for celibate bishops to be made available for those… Read more »

Father David
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Father David

Canon Godsall I think it would be difficult, nay impossible, to disagree with the viewpoint that the Church of England has seriously departed from a traditional understanding of the given nature of the three-fold ministry with the introduction of recent novel innovations. With the anticipated further introduction of women bishops I can think, in ministerial terms, of nothing so profoundly un-Catholic as this serious departure from the received Tradition thus making any Christ inspired reunion with the great Churches of Christendom, sadly, virtually impossible.

Hannah
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Hannah

Fr David,

The formal separation of the Catholic and Orthodox churches has subsisted since 1054. So far as the Roman Catholic church is concerned, you are no more a priest than I am, and the eucharists you celebrate are no more valid than the ones I celebrate. I am deeply saddened that such is the case, but the Church of England’s decision to ordain women arises out of our post-Reformation heritage, it is not the cause of this particular faultline in western Christianity.

Andrew Godsall
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Andrew Godsall

Fr David – if you are correct, what are you or these flying bishops doing remaining in the Church of England at all?

Cynthia
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Cynthia

It’s just so puzzling to hear that WO (and WB) is a much more “serious departure from the received Tradition” than married priests, divorce, birth control, and the ceasing of selling indulgences and burning heretics. And to know that some believe the sacraments are perfectly valid when administered by male pedophiles but not fine women.

The reasoning of this is seriously flawed, cherry picked, and very much in keeping with the long tradition of oppressing women.

Maintaining a separate episcopacy for this “logic” is very strange.

The Reverend Laurence J. Roberts
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The Reverend Laurence J. Roberts

‘….However PEVs are needed and necessary simply because the Established Church in altering the make up of the three fold ministry has so dramatically departed from Scripture and Tradition and has thus put itself out of kilter with other great churches with which hitherto we have shared a common understanding of the make up of the ancient three-fold ministry…’ Posted by: Father David on Thursday, 8 August 2013 I cannot, for the life of me, understand how any one, or any congregation or constituency holding such views, as these, can remain in the Church of England, at all – let… Read more »

Father David
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Father David

I agree wholeheartedly with you Hannah when you say that the great division between East and West occurred as long ago as the 11th century but surely the most remarkable ecclesiological happening of the 20th century was the Ecumenical movement.when great progress was made in healing the many rifts but now alas parts of the Anglican Communion have chosen to put barriers and obstacles in the way thus hampering the great progress that was made in the last century towards the fulfilling of the Divine command “that they may all be one”. I must further say that I don’t care… Read more »

Hannah
Guest
Hannah

Yes, Fr David, but the ecumenical movement also includes the churches of the Porvoo Agreement and our Methodist Covenant partners, and for those churches our hesitation over women in the episcopate is proving an obstacle to greater unity. Or does that not matter?

I don’t much care for an approach that wants to drum people out of the church either, as it happens, but I do sometimes wonder what we sacrifice in the name of a unity which – on a lot of objective measures – does not really exist anyway.

Veuster
Guest
Veuster

> It’s just so puzzling to hear that WO (and WB) is a much more “serious departure from the received Tradition” than married priests, divorce, birth control, and the ceasing of selling indulgences and burning heretics. And to know that some believe the sacraments are perfectly valid when administered by male pedophiles but not fine women. As a one-time traditionalist fortified by having received communion earlier today from a priest who happened to be a woman, may I have a try at explaining this? The marriage of priests is a matter of discipline, not of doctrine. The Orthodox are well… Read more »

James
Guest
James

In many dioceses where the PEV/Provincial Arrangements are used the bishop is an Assistant Bishop in that diocese, much in the same way as the assistant bishops in the dioceses of Leicester and Newcastle, and are part of the diocesan bishops staff team. I don’t think that any traditional catholic or conservative evangelist would deny that the Eucharist that any ordained bishop celebrates is the Eucharist. However, one part of the PEVs ministry that has become invaluable is in his role as “spokesman and adviser for those who are opposed [to the ordination of women]”. There have been and continue… Read more »

Andrew Godsall
Guest
Andrew Godsall

Just to be clear – I don’t want to drum anyone out of any church. My question to Fr David – yet another he seems to have no answer for – was why he and others wished to remain in a church they believed had departed so far from orthodoxy. I can only assume they don’t actually believe that.

Father David
Guest
Father David

Hannah, of course, all members of the Body of Christ “matter” but I think in recent decades the Church of England has with the ARCIC statements often looked towards the rock from which we were hewn. I seem to remember that Archbishops Fisher, Ramsey, Coggan, Runcie, Carey, Williams and Welby have all made significant pilgrimages to Rome in order to strengthen the bonds between our two Communions. I am sure that at some point in meetings with Popes John XXIII, Paul VI, John Paul I, John Paul II, Benedict XVI and Francis the conversations must have touched upon Church Unity,… Read more »

Cynthia
Guest
Cynthia

Thank you for your explanation, Veuster. This is particularly interesting “but it is the church’s teaching and is set out clearly in Article XXVI: Of the unworthiness of the ministers, which hinders not the effect of the sacraments. This is indisputably the Anglican doctrine of validity of the sacraments, which accords also with that of Rome and Orthodoxy.” Some are claiming that a separate episcopacy is needed so that there are bishops who won’t ordain women. However, If the unworthiness of the ministers doesn’t hinder the effect of the sacrament, then there should be absolutely no problem with a single… Read more »

Malcolm French+
Guest

Father David may find my characterization unkind or unhelpful, but he declines to present any coherent argument that it is inaccurate. If one begins by granting the necessity of “sacramental assurance” to those who dissent from the majority view on the ordination of women, one can certainly make the case for the alphabet soup of resolutions by which a parish may indicate its unwillingness to accept the ministry of an ordained woman. One cannot, however, make an orthodox case for the creation of the so-called flying bishops. Every single bishop in the Church of England is male. Every single bishop… Read more »

Father David
Guest
Father David

Well that’s very gracious of the good Canon from Exeter – allowing us to remain within the Church of our birth and baptism – or would he really, rather, in his heart of hearts, like to see us go, thus allowing heterodoxy to take over the Established Church completely? Certainly the thrust of his comments to date seem to suggest that to be the case!

Father David
Guest
Father David

Ah, John Mason Neale what a great orthodox priest he was – founding the Community of Sisters of St. Margaret of Antioch at East Grinstead (now transferred to Uckfield). His great catholic influence is still with us in that within the New English Hymnal there are no fewer than 39 hymns (same number as the Articles of Religion) assciated with his name. From the 39 at yesterday’s celebration we marked his feast day by singing one of them – “O happy band of pilgrims”