Wednesday, 14 July 2010
Catholic Group in General Synod issues statement
Statement from Catholic Group
Jul 14, 2010
Posted by Simon Sarmiento on
Wednesday, 14 July 2010 at 12:36pm BST
The Catholic Group in General Synod is encouraged by the remarks of the Archbishop of Canterbury that there is still ‘unfinished business’ and that ‘the Church is only part of the way through the process’ of determining the way forward for women bishops legislation.
The Group was, however, disappointed that there was a lack of support for financial hardship where clergy feel by conscience that they need to resign from the Church of England. The onus now is on the Church of England to provide for its clergy to remain within the Church for which we have always fought as loyal Anglicans.
We remain committed to both the process and our Church, and would wish to play a major part in helping the Church in its ongoing journey in a spirit of unity that is Christ’s way.
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Church of England
| General Synod
"The onus now is on the Church of England to provide for its clergy to remain within the Church for which we have always fought as loyal Anglicans."
Some of them certainly have a very odd way of showing their Anglican loyalty. I've read statements from prominent "Anglican Catholics" which have blasted everything identifiably Anglican, in the pursuit of a make-believe Romanism.
"The Group was, however, disappointed that there was a lack of support for financial hardship where clergy feel by conscience that they need to resign from the Church of England."
I live, here in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, among strong Brethren and Mennonite communities. In fact, I took some courses from Eastern Mennonite Seminary [which you may google to find out more about]. One of the most interesting to me was one in Christian ethics. A great deal of discussion revolved around parameters of pacifism and being ' a people apart,' and the costs of that.
Turns out, the Mennonites strongly believe that if it is costly to be a pacifist, you pay the cost, whether it is a fine for not paying 'war taxes' or a jail term for protesting a war. To follow and act on a pacifist conscience can be costly, but, the Mennonites say, bearing the cost is part of the witness.
In secular terms, no pain, no gain. In other terms, no cross, no crown.
I commend this attitude to those clergy thinking of leaving the C of E.
It seems to me a loyal Anglican would accept the decisions of General Synod as being the mind of the church and abide thereby, not seek for an "out".
When one resigns a position in secular life, one also does not expect the continuing provision of the emoluments of that position. In the case of employment by the Church - in any paid capacity - surely one could not reasonably expect the right to any different treatment?
In fact, if the resignation stems from systematic disagreement with the stated policy of one's employer (in the case, the C.of E.) then there is further reason for no financial compensation. The argument being put forward by some clergy - that they were misinformed as to the possibility of any progress in the scope of the ordination of women (with the expectation of a continuing protection against this possibility) is not sufficient grounds on which to claim continuing financial support.
The last time financial support was guaranteed to departing clergy, after the ordination of women to the priesthood; afforded a degree of continued compensation that the C.of E. cannot afford this time around. Even the questionable moral principle of 'compensation' has been pre-empted by a lack of funds! This is the true cost of conscience - this time around.