Comments: more comments on the Revision Committee

"The Committee announced that suggestions for the statutory transfer of authority have now been dropped. This means that arrangements for those unable to receive the Episcopal ministry of women will need to be made through delegation from the diocesan bishop" - Fulcrum web-site -

This sounds quite 'catholic' and authentically Anglican - where the diocesan bishop is treated with the respect and dignity given to Anglican diocesan bishops. As someone has already said on this site: a bishop is a bishop, and none more so than a diocesan bishop, whose episcope is still his/her unique prerogative in the diocese.

However, the article, posted above from 'Church Society', argues on different lines, seemingly preferring an un-catholic solution which would, oddly, suit the ultra-montane catholics - though on very shaky grounds of apostolicity. To argue for a separate jurisdiction for dissenters against what will probably be the decision of General Synod on the issue (of cohesive episcope) would create a very questionable state of orthodoxy in the Church of England - a situation at odds with its Provincial partners overseas.
"Flying Bishops" so seem to be a thing of the past, and distinctly non-catholic.

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Wednesday, 18 November 2009 at 10:48pm GMT

Ron stop being silly. You liberals cannot break something deliberately (and illegally in the first instance) and then claim the moral high ground for restoring it whilst claiming to be pure! Hence this post makes me cross. It lacks ANY sympathy for those being unchurched, it refuses to recognise our integrity and it has a 'crowing' feel to it.

IF you really are now passionate about Catholic orders and theology then welcome on board. You will of course join with the other 98% of Catholics world wide in accepting the clear reasons why we promote an all male priesthood. That is the universal position of all true Catholics (the sort whose theology matches their vestments)

But no I suspect you wickedly supported breaking Catholic orders in 1992 - to do what you want, shattering ecumenical development and the unity of your own church- and now have the GALL to try and restore that Catholicity whilst making out your opponents are the ones stifling Catholicity.

It can only be called a very cheap shot

Posted by Ed Tomlinson at Thursday, 19 November 2009 at 8:16am GMT

"But no I suspect you wickedly supported breaking Catholic orders in 1992" - Ed Tomlinson -

Who's being silly now? From what you have revealed to all of us on this site it is a fact that, when you were first priested into the Church of England, she had already decided to ordain women as priests into that Church. If you were then as 'catholic' as you claim, in the way you claim - regarding this as a break with true 'catholicty', what was it that allowed you to go ahead with your ordination, Ed? Did you thin it was more 'catholic' to agree to serve under a 'flying bishop' than a properly-catholic traditional diocesan?

At least, my own ministry as an SSF brother, and later a priest has covered both pre and after situations of women's priesting in the Anglican Communion. Before it happened, and at the time of it's institution in the Anglican Church of New Zealand, I had to do what every Anglican did at that time; consider, prayerfully, whether I could accept that the Church I belonged to was in a position of authority to go ahead with the ordinations. I have never thought that to be a 'catholic' you had to be a Roman Catholic.

Together with most of my colleagues at that time, I saw the priesting of women as an important and prophetic new understanding of the call of God upon the lives of women to become priests, as well as men. It took me a while, but I began to see the prophetic wisdom of what my Church was doing.

To say that your form of being 'catholic' is superior to mine is rather childish - considering I've probably been at it a lot longer than you, and have had to work through the process. Perhaps in time you might, yourself, change your mind. I just hope you keep an open mind on this, and all other aspects of what it might really mean to be 'catholic'. It's a lot more than just about what you wear in the sanctuary, and your conservative views on women and gays in the Church.

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Thursday, 19 November 2009 at 9:46am GMT

Ed:

This strikes me as a matter of individual conscience. Part of being a member of a church...and especially of being part of the clergy of that church...is accepting that the church has a process of discernment for making changes in its doctrines, in its teachings, in its ecclesiology. And then accepting those changes when made through that process.

If you cannot, in good conscience, accept those changes, then there are two proper responses:

1. Work to reverse the changes through the same discernment process; or
2. Leave the church.

What you and those who think like you want is for the church to ignore its own discernment and "accommodate" you forever and ever. You want a "church within a church". As others have pointed out, when Wesley's followers felt they could no longer exist within the CoE, they left to form their own church; the Puritans did the same. On my side of the pond, the Reformed Episcopalians did the same over 100 years ago.

I understand and appreciate your conscientious objection to women's ordination and consecration; what I don't understand and cannot accept is the idea that you should get special treatment because of it.

Posted by Pat O'Neill at Thursday, 19 November 2009 at 11:12am GMT

"IF you really are now passionate about Catholic orders and theology then welcome on board. You will of course join with the other 98% of Catholics world wide in accepting the clear reasons why we promote an all male priesthood. That is the universal position of all true Catholics (the sort whose theology matches their vestments)."

Absolute nonsense. Neither the RCC nor FiF have a monopoly Catholic identity. Ain't no handle on the crucifix, Father (unless you're talking about one of those Russian ones used for giving blessings).

By the way, you still haven't answered my question about why women are incapable of being ordained. What exactly is it about Christian women that makes them "unsuitable matter" for the sacrament of Orders? There's no other group that's supposedly incapable of being ordained, is there? So there must be something specifically about women themselves that makes this impossible. What is it, please?

Related to the question, what is your definition of "woman," for the purposes of refusing them ordination? You got all shirty when someone mentioned genital inspections, but it's a serious question. Is someone who has sex reassignment surgery to become a man capable of being ordained? How about someone born with any number of intersex conditions? How about people who are outwardly members of one gender, but genetically are members of the other? How female does someone have to be before the sacrament of Orders won't take

Posted by BillyD at Thursday, 19 November 2009 at 1:28pm GMT

BillyD, you asked "By the way, you still haven't answered my question about why women are incapable of being ordained. What exactly is it about Christian women that makes them "unsuitable matter" for the sacrament of Orders? There's no other group that's supposedly incapable of being ordained, is there? So there must be something specifically about women themselves that makes this impossible. What is it, please?"
***
I can't resist, perhaps Fr. Ed is wondering "Why can't a woman be more like a man?"

Posted by peterpi at Thursday, 19 November 2009 at 5:31pm GMT

I think we have arrived at a position where Oxford Movement Catholicism has broken from Gore Catholicism (that's Charles not Al) in the Church of England.

Posted by Pluralist at Thursday, 19 November 2009 at 8:31pm GMT
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