Comments: petitions in support of women as bishops

It is unfortunate, to say the least, that the laity petition begins

"We, the lay members of the Church of England,. . ."

with the implication that those who sign the petition form the entirety of the lay members of the Church of England.

In the very act of calling for non-discrimination, discrimination has been introduced.

It should have started "We, as lay members . . ." or "We, being lay members . . ."

Posted by pinus at Tuesday, 27 May 2008 at 10:16pm BST

Pinus, you're missing the point. It's prophetic! Once they have driven out all opposition it will be true - they will be THE Laity of the Church of England - any dissent can go! That is the attitude we are faced with. And it is the choice Synod will have to make. Do we want a laity which is broarder than the signatories of this petition? The signatories do not and they do themselves a disservice by claiming that they do. They know fully well that their proposals do not even begin to meet the needs of opponents but they do not have the guts to say so because they fear Synod may be more open minded and generous if it sees through this chirade.

The petition ought to state:
"We the laity of the newly streamlined CofE believe that women should be consecrated as bishops ASAP. We acknowlege that many thousands do not share this view but we believe that we are better off without them and are fully prepared to see them unchurched." That would be honest!

Posted by David Malloch at Wednesday, 28 May 2008 at 12:26am BST

Nit-picking, pinus.

On the other hand: a petition for male clergy? What, are "some animals more equal than others"? :-/

Posted by JCF at Wednesday, 28 May 2008 at 2:37am BST

Tush, David M, women in the episcopate have been due for a long time, as everyone should know by now - all this faux surprise and sabre-rattling is not becoming. The "antis" with high principles all went to Rome years ago, and the people I know who did that don't entertain a high opinion of those who accommodated their consciences to remaining in the C of E while still being anti-women's ordination.

Posted by Fr Mark at Wednesday, 28 May 2008 at 8:22am BST

So many letters and petitions, so little time! I really do worry about all this politicking and maneouvering. Whatever happened to wait and see? Let's wait and see what the General Synod agenda actually says before we get ourselves worked up.

Posted by Fr. G at Wednesday, 28 May 2008 at 9:00am BST

JCF - there has already been a petition for female clergy, which attracted signatures ffrom half the female clerics in the Church of England.

Posted by Frozenchristian at Wednesday, 28 May 2008 at 11:05am BST

Re the letter from female clergy:

According to the letter posted yesterday, see above,

"The letter, signed by over 500 clergy women within two days, has accumulated even more support since it was published and is now approaching a thousand signatures."

Posted by Simon Sarmiento at Wednesday, 28 May 2008 at 11:19am BST

Why have different petitions for laity and clergy at all? Surely clergy could indicate their position in a unified petition? I am due to be ordained deacon at Petertide - should I sign as a lay person or hold off and sign as clergy? Or sign as both? I might start a petition to only have one petition - who is with me?

Posted by Cedd at Wednesday, 28 May 2008 at 11:47am BST

Although I am strongly in favour of WO, including women bishops, this petition raises all sorts of issues. For the moment, as a boring, pedantic academic, I'd like to point out that the covering invitation contains a common but inexcusable grammatical error.

Posted by john at Wednesday, 28 May 2008 at 1:21pm BST

"Twenty years’ experience in the provinces of the Anglican Communion where there are women bishops has shown tried and tested ways to meet graciously and generously the concerns of those who remain opposed to women’s ordination."

In live in America. TEC, still marginally part of the Anglican Communion, has in most dioceses graciously and generously hounded out opponents of WO, refused them seminary training and ordination, and made no effective arrangements for alternative episcopal oversight. This statement is at worst deliberately mendacious or, at best, pig ignorant.

Posted by Austin Scott at Wednesday, 28 May 2008 at 7:30pm BST

"JCF - there has already been a petition for female clergy"

I realize that, FrozenChristian, but it's besides the point.

There shouldn't be a separate petition for "male clergy", for the same reason there shouldn't be a "Union of White Episcopalians": dominant classes don't need separate advocacy entities (regardless of their agenda).

If there is to be a another clergy petition {*}, it should be just that: a *clergy petition*, which BOTH male and female clergy may sign.

{*} I say "If", because I basically agree w/ Cedd: why should their be separate petitions for clergy and laity? The point is to get as many *signatures in support of women in the episcopate* as possible, not segregate the signatures into separate petitions for separate classes.

Posted by JCF at Wednesday, 28 May 2008 at 10:58pm BST

"This statement is at worst deliberately mendacious or, at best, pig ignorant. Posted by Austin Scott"

Pot, meet Kettle.

Lord have mercy!

Posted by JCF at Thursday, 29 May 2008 at 3:47am BST

"TEC, still marginally part of the Anglican Communion, has in most dioceses graciously and generously hounded out opponents of WO, refused them seminary training and ordination, and made no effective arrangements for alternative episcopal oversight."

Really? Then how is it, in the Diocese of New York (hardly a bastion of conservative thought in TEC), we had a rector who was so vehemently opposed to women's ordination that he refused to recommend my wife for seminary when she was exploring it a decade or so ago?

Posted by Pat O'Neill at Thursday, 29 May 2008 at 4:08am BST

Reading the comments it seems people have not read the text of the petition. It is not to do with whether women can be consecrated - it is to do with provision

Posted by Ian at Thursday, 29 May 2008 at 10:35pm BST

I've been thinking on this for a few days, and I've come to a conclusion:

Maybe we all need to laugh at ourselves and with ourselves a bit more. I suspect that Dawn French in "The Vicar of Dibley" has done more to change minds in favor of woman priests than any petition or march or theological rhetoric ever could.

Posted by Pat O'Neill at Friday, 30 May 2008 at 9:54pm BST
Post a comment









Remember personal info?






Please note that comments are limited to 400 words. Comments that are longer than 400 words will not be approved.

Cookies are used to remember your personal information between visits to the site. This information is stored on your computer and used to refill the text boxes on your next visit. Any cookie is deleted if you select 'No'. By ticking 'Yes' you agree to this use of a cookie by this site. No third-party cookies are used, and cookies are not used for analytical, advertising, or other purposes.