Friday, 29 October 2010
Latest Church Statistics - press comments
We noted yesterday’s publication of the latest Church of England statistics. These included statistics on ordination of women resolutions and petitions at 1 January 2010, which for the convenience of readers I have extracted and published here.
Two papers have picked up these particular figures.
Tim Ross in the Telegraph: More parishes reject Church of England bishops who ordain women priests.
Ed Beavan in the Church Times: Statistics show parishes opposed to women priests.
Despite what is stated in these articles, these statistics have occasionally been published before, but not as part of the annual statistical round-up. For example, the February 2006 General Synod paper GS 1605 (House Of Bishops’ Women Bishops Group: Report To The General Synod From A Working Group Chaired By The Bishop Of Guildford) contained the figures for 31 March 2004 in an appendix.
The Church Mouse has a rather more considered look at these statistics: Latest Church statistics - good news!
Posted by Peter Owen on
Friday, 29 October 2010 at 11:45am BST
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Church of England
Tim Ross seems to think that the only clergy in the Church of England are those that have full time Diocesan stipendiary posts!
We could ordain no bishops for the life time of this synod.
So in the last ten years, several years after the initial opportunity to take advantage of resolutions ABC legislation, a further 67 parishes did so, bringing the total up to 1 in 35. Wow, by CofE standards that's a positively G-force spinning rush.
1000 parishes out of 13000 object to women priests and this includes about 230 who only object to women bishops - and that is big news?
How about 12000 parishes are happy with women priests and bishops?
The news is that these items are part of the official statistics for the first time.
Hmmmm, interesting statistics. Erica, I wonder if in fact there will be significant disparity between the number of parishes that are happy with a women priest and bishop - although I have no "hard evidence" I think that many would be happy with a women priest but not a women bishop....?
Is anyone else concerned with the average age of clerics being 51? What does this say about the future of the church?!
It would be helpful to know more about these A, B and C parishes e.g. churchmanship, electoral roll numbers, average sunday attendance, financial viability, even which diocese they are in. After all some parishes have avoided amalgamation or losing their priest by signing the resolutions, I suspect. Some may well be small parishes within larger benefices.In some places things are likely to change with a change of Incumbent.I imagine more might be added to the list if a non-woman ordaining diocesan is succeeded by one who does.
Like you I don't have hard statistics, but that doesn't stop me from having an opinion!
Seriously, though, I believe that there are a fair number of parishes who feel uneasy about women bishops, partly because of the unfamiliarity of it, because they don't like the split it is causing in the church, because they don't agree with the theology, because they've never really liked women priests but have not had one in their parish so it's been a remote issue, whereas having a woman bishop could bring it all so much closer to home.
But I also believe that just like the women priest issue, this one too will settle once women bishops become normal. Those who really object will either leave the church or find sanctuary under the code of practice.
Just like many individuals changed their minds about women priests once they experienced their ministry, so many will change their minds about women bishops.
In about 10 years time it will be a complete non-issue.