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GRAS (the Group for Rescinding the Act of Synod) have sent us a press release which is copied below the fold.
Group for Rescinding the Act of Synod
Press briefing for immediate release 14th July 2014
20 years after General Synod legislated to enable women to be priests in the Church of England it has today voted by a clear majority a legislative package enabling women to be bishops. The intention is to complete the process in November. The 1993 legislation included an Act of Synod that many in the church criticised because it appeared to be rushed through to ameliorate those who were opposed to the ordination of women as priests, but who had not expected the legislation to be passed.
The Act made extra provision for those who opposed women’s ordination, and legislated for discrimination in the church. It enabled parishes to vote not to have a bishop who supported women priests, with the implication that a bishop’s hands would be tainted by ordaining a woman. It ensured that no role in the Church of England would be closed to those who opposed women’s ordination, even roles which involved working closely with, or being responsible for, significant numbers of women clergy.
Chair of GRAS – Group for Rescinding the Act of Synod – Ruth McCurry said “We are overjoyed that we have finally seen the last of this Act. But we haven’t seen the end of discrimination against women in the Church of England. There is lots of work still to be done before women and men can truly flourish alongside each other in the church.”
NOTE TO EDITORS:
GRAS – The Group for the Rescinding of the Act of Synod and the promotion of Women as Bishops – was founded with the primary objective of campaigning to eradicate the 1993 Act of Synod.
Under the new legislation some of the provisions contained in the defunct Act of Synod are reborn in the Bishops’ Declaration, which sets out much of the detail of how the new women bishops Measure will be put into practice. Although its legal status is different, this Declaration will still restrict how women – and those who support them – will be able to minister in the church.