Comments: "House of Bishops approves Women Bishops Legislation"

Is anyone able to explain what practical effect (if any) the two amendments will have? They seem to be clarifying amendments to me rather than ones that change the substance of the Measure.

That (to me) is a good thing. Now roll on a "yes" vote in July.

Posted by Alastair Newman at Monday, 21 May 2012 at 10:34pm BST

•Bishops will continue not to discriminate in selecting candidates for ordination on the grounds of their theological convictions regarding the admission of women to Holy Orders;

Oh good. I imagine that only ¨closeted candidates¨ ought be selected in keeping with the ¨not to discriminate¨ custom at the Church of England?

Posted by Leonardo Ricardo at Monday, 21 May 2012 at 10:36pm BST

As I understand it, this should satisfy the traditionalist Catholic wing that the male bishop ordaining the priest is unpolluted if it derives from his 'being' (if he was consecrated by males alone) but it won't satisfy the evangelical male only headship wing because the person in charge remains the diocesan bishop who may be a she and differences betweeen derived and delegated mean nothing.

Posted by Pluralist at Monday, 21 May 2012 at 11:02pm BST

This commentary may be helpful
http://pastoralsympathy.blogspot.co.uk/2012/05/sheep-unpicks-worst-press-release-ever.html

Posted by Simon Sarmiento at Monday, 21 May 2012 at 11:32pm BST

It's a bit like nineteenth century Mormon polygamy. A first wife has to give permission if her husbamd is to take another wife. But if she refuses , he can proceed anyway!

Same reasoning , I think....the Diocesan woman bishop has a authority, but she must allow another bishop to operate in her diocese.

All this nonsense, and yet the measure could still fail in July.

Posted by Robert ian Williams at Tuesday, 22 May 2012 at 6:18am BST

Can I just say that in my humble opinion these amendments are no more than "last minute tinkering" as Miranda Threlfall-Holmes put it in her recent article. I do not think that they will particularly alter views and perceptions on either side of the debate - not even "traditional" catholics (whatever one of them is).

Graeme Buttery

Posted by Graeme Buttery at Tuesday, 22 May 2012 at 9:42am BST

I think there is a hostage to fortune in amendment 2.

If opponents want not just a male bishop but one who has never ordained a woman or participated in consecrating a woman, then that is a theology of taint.

The Bishops' rather ill-judged amendment has, I suspect, left a number of us who support the ordination of women womdering if we can actually support this legislation now. For me, the jury is out on that one.

Posted by Charles Read at Tuesday, 22 May 2012 at 10:38am BST

The explanatory notes to the press release offered by 'Shaun Sheep' in Simon's web-link, above, has this to say:

"The legal mechanism, however, is that the diocesan bishop must give the alternative bishop permission to ordain within the diocese, but the ordination itself will be under the alternative bishop's own authority as a bishop in his own right."

The operative word that is important is 'must'.
In other words, it seems that the Diocesan Bishop, if a Woman, 'MUST' give permission for a suitably appointed Male Bishop to ordain clergy in her patch. There seems to be no alternative here.

This, of course, would follow on from the fact that the Church of England, at the time when Women Bishops become Diocesan Bishops, there will still be 'Provisional Episcopal Visitors' on hand to provide 'Alternative Episcopal Oversight' for those dioceses where the Woman Diocesan Bishop is considered, by some of her parishes, parishioners and clergy, to be invalidly ordained as a Bishop!

This situation would surely be considered - except by the most subtle casuistry - to uphold an ethos of a two-level standard of episcopal validity! What does that say about the Church of England's attitude towards collegiality among her bishops?

And how will that affect her relationships with other Provinces of the Anglican Communion, where such a deficit in credibility of a woman bishop would be something inimical to any 'covenantal' relationship such as has been proposed by A.C.O.?
"

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Tuesday, 22 May 2012 at 11:49am BST

Ron - I had not seen 'must'as meaning that but as saying that the alternative bishop cannot operate on his own but needs the delegation of the diocesan. The Code will spell out how such delegation will work.

Graeme - I'm (genuinely!) interested in how traditionalist Catholic Anglicans see this - because maybe the HofB has annoyed everybody!

Posted by Charles Read at Tuesday, 22 May 2012 at 12:15pm BST

This commentary by the Bishop of Willesden may also be helpful
http://bishopofwillesden.blogspot.co.uk/2012/05/women-bishops-what-house-of-bishops.html

Posted by Simon Sarmiento at Tuesday, 22 May 2012 at 1:06pm BST

What Pete Broadbent does not seem to have noticed is that in trying to appease the (very, very few) who could not accept the legislation as it stood, women clergy now feel very unwanted and not listened to at all. If it is so obvious that a bishop would respect the theological position of a congregation who issue Letters of Request, why need to put it in legislation? I Even if this is not what he thinks the amendment means, it is a way to bring in a theology of taint again.
There is nothing in the press release which indicates that the ministry of women is valued by the bishops.
The final sentence of his blog entry sounds rather as though the main reason for the bishops to want women to be ordained bishops is so that we will be quiet and let them get on with what they want to do....
These unspoken messages are often the truth, and cannot be quickly undone. I think the House of Bishops is at real risk of finally losing any respect women (and others) had for them

Posted by Rosalind at Tuesday, 22 May 2012 at 1:40pm BST

Hmmm. If the logic of the second amendment were to be extended, you could have PCCs of liberal catholic churches insisting (due to their "theological convictions") on a liberal catholic priest who hadn't been tainted by being ordained by a conservative evangelical bishop - and vice versa. Bizarre.

Posted by Daniel Walters at Tuesday, 22 May 2012 at 1:43pm BST

In creating Flying Bishops the Church of England unwittingly allowed some to take refuge in a theology of taint. The H of B amendments now accept this as part of the Church of England's ecclesiology.

It may now require the General Synod of those Provinces to throw out this whole mess so that women's ministry is not further compromised. It seems the bishops cannot be trusted with this.

Posted by abbey mouse at Tuesday, 22 May 2012 at 1:45pm BST

Agree with Charles Read's point - the second amendment reinforces taint, taint and more taint. Since when did we get to cherry pick a Bishop who agreed with our theological views - will we get to do that for everything else as well - or just a theological view about women. Actually, I don't get to choose a Bishop who agrees with my theological view of women's ordination if I AGREE with it - certainly not in Chichester, for example. If the Church of England wants to become a place where women are quite literally 'untouchable' because it is possible to insist upon a Bishop who is not only male but also will not consecrate or ordain women or be ordained by a woman, then yes by all means vote this through.

Posted by Lindsay Southern at Tuesday, 22 May 2012 at 1:55pm BST

When I first heard Rowan talk about delegation and derivation at General Synod in February I thought it sounded helpful, but a short conversation with a couple of traditonal Catholic priests changed my mind. I think the clause is benign but could be ineffective.

The pick and mix bishops clause (which spells out what could be implied in the measure) is probably more dangerous. Why it is necessary to spell out what is commonsense? Do people lose all their commonsense and pastoral skills when they become bishops? Maybe some do? Surely most don't.

Do I vote for it or do I not?

Posted by Susan Cooper at Tuesday, 22 May 2012 at 2:26pm BST

Commentary by Alan Wilson
http://bishopalan.blogspot.co.uk/2012/05/swimmin-with-wimmin-part-94.html

Posted by Simon Sarmiento at Tuesday, 22 May 2012 at 3:27pm BST

So there is a deal here. Satisfactory to no one (including me) but the best on offer. I sincerely hope that FiF have the intelligence to accept it. One very important practical consideration to bear in mind is that it is one in the eye for the so-called Ordinariate and a not particularly benevolent pope.

Posted by John at Tuesday, 22 May 2012 at 7:00pm BST

Taint ain't catholic.

Posted by JCF at Tuesday, 22 May 2012 at 7:46pm BST

Yup, it's an attempt to broker a deal. It continues the compromise we're already living. It's not pleasant to me not to be able to give pastoral care to 8 of my parishes because I ordain women. But it's where we ended up in 1992. And I want the priests and people of those parishes to carry on being part of the CofE. So I'm prepared to send them a signal that they'll continue to receive pastoral care from a bishop who himself understands and lives their integrity even when they are under a female Bishop of London.

And it's helpful to declare with clarity that not all episcopal authority is derived from legality, even though there are quite few ecclesiastical Stalinists who would like to assert that it does.

They're small changes. They're nuanced. But they might help Con Evos and Trad Caths to stay. And they don't undermine in any way the principles of how the Measure and Code of Practice will operate. That's the reason these matters go to the House of Bishops (not a bit of polity that the USA Church works with, I realise), but it's part of the way our Synodical system works. If both ends of the spectrum can recognise that pragmatic Realpolitik will get us to a 2/3 majority in July and run with the deal offered, that would get us the end that we want - Women Bishops. Can't come too soon.

Posted by Pete Broadbent at Tuesday, 22 May 2012 at 8:44pm BST

Yes Pete it may give a signal to those parishes. The whole legislation as it stood was designed to give a strong signal to those parishes opposed to women's ordained ministry that we would like them to carry on being a part of the CofE. Unfortunately these 'small changes' also send a signal to supporters of women bishops and the Church of England's women clergy - and it is not such a welcoming one, nor one that particularly encourages us to stay, nor assures us that we will continue to receive pastoral care from a Bishop who understands and lives our integrity... The House of Bishops may need to do a lot of work to convince people to run with this particular deal. The end does not always justify the means.

Posted by Lindsay Southern at Tuesday, 22 May 2012 at 9:51pm BST

Pete - the end we want is not women bishops at any price. I for one want a church which does not enshrine discrimination in law and then call it pastoral sensitivity. Pastoral sensitivity is what all priests and bishops should and I hope do, practise; and if we need law to make this happen then we aren't a church worth the name.
This action by the bishops suddenly feels like the last nail in the coffin of my attempt to live with this unholy (sic) compromise which began in 1993 and is getting steadily more discriminatory not less. The deal might bring in "Con Evos" and "Trad Caths" - but I think it may well lose quite a lot of women and those who have been standing with them for years.

Posted by Rosalind at Tuesday, 22 May 2012 at 11:12pm BST

I look forward to Pete Broadbent and his friends brokering a deal for lesbian and gay people next, and an oh so practical and sensitive recognition and support of that integrity...

Posted by LaurenceR at Tuesday, 22 May 2012 at 11:21pm BST

The list of suitable 'theologically consistent' Bishops will include more than just the serving PEVs. And when Resolutions AB&C disappear the list of suitable 'theologically consistent' priests will include more than those who are signed up members of the Wilfrid and Hilda Society. The criteria will become: "any male priest who has not done anything theologically inconsistent." I expect there will continue to be a number of male priests who, as now, will quietly hedge their bets by not turning up to a woman's ordination, or a chrism mass with women, or when a woman is presiding at their chapter meeting, and who will help out with holiday cover in a resolution parish in need. For some male priests the principle of women's orders is not important enough to stand up for.

If a serving bishop doesn't ordain women, ask why not. It can be simply out of pastoral concern for the opposed men, and he could still be someone who celebrates women's ministry and who has chosen to bear the burden of the fracture himself. However, if he doesn't ordain women out of personal conviction, an ordained women in his area/diocese is forced to bear the burden when looking to him for episcopal ministry when he doesn't accept her priestly ministry. (eg she will have to accept his discernment in an interview about her priestly ministry for a new parish). And furthermore in an area with a serving bishop who is opposed, many of his male priests will simply keep quiet, making it even harder for the women there to have their ministry affirmed.

So based on this, (my current experience), it will happen that when there is a woman bishop there will be some men who quietly find ways of avoiding her in order to keep themselves off the 'theologically inconsistent' list and keep their future options open.
The House of Bishops should not have amended the legislation.

Posted by Beth at Wednesday, 23 May 2012 at 12:42am BST

Rosalind's last comment here needs to be seen in proper perspective by the House of Bishops in the Church of England. The structured inclusiveness offered to objectors to women as co-bearers of the Image and Likeness of God with their male counter-parts - in ministry, as well as witness to Christ in the Church - is inimical to the scriptural witness of the Apostle Paul, when he states, categorically, that "In Christ, there is neither male nor female".

One can try to rationalise that statement to allow the exemption of women from Holy Orders by subtle acts of casuistry - but is that the Way of Christ? And is that the action of the Holy Spirit in the world of today? The majority of Church members in England and Wales think not. And so do I.

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Wednesday, 23 May 2012 at 1:35am BST

Here is a genuine question about the House of Bishops’ amendment 5(c).

A parish says it is opposed to women’s ordination on headship grounds – so will a bishop who is opposed on ontological grounds, i.e. a woman is simply made out of the wrong physical matter to receive the grace of orders and therefore she cannot offer the Sacrifice of the Mass, be acceptable? Further the male clergy and bishops who support her have somehow also lost the ability to offer the Sacrifice of the Mass for reasons that are still Shrouded in Mystery (to me, anyway). So, here is the perfectly fair question: will this bishop do for the headship parish because he is against women’s ordination but – and this is important – he is against it for ENTIRELY the Wrong Reasons (according to the headship objection) and indeed believes things about the nature of Christianity that are abhorrent to the parish objecting on headship grounds apart from the fact that they agree that women can’t be ordained but have little common ground about what ordination is in the first place.

I’m still digesting this, and am increasingly of the view that this is such a substantial change in what we faithfully prayed, thought and discussed in diocesan synods, that we need more time to have a proper process of discernment. This is so important I see no reason to rush – the bishops have given us in Synod less than two months to consider their amendments. That simply isn’t enough time.

But my initial view is that this amendment takes the flawed, uncatholic theology underlying the Act of Synod to a new level. What the bishops have given us is an amendment, enshrining it in the legislation itself (unlike the Act of Synod), that says that it isn’t good enough to be against the ordination of women: you now must be against it for the Right Reasons to meet the needs of the petitioning parish. And what happens if members of the petitioning parish are against women bishops but for DIFFERENT REASONS. (That isn’t silly by the way. Conservative Anglo-catholics divide precisely down the ontological/ecumenical divide – that is, it would be fine if Rome ordained women, which is clearly at odds with the ontological objection). By this reasoning, the parish will need multiple substitute bishops. Pete calls this nuanced; I call it an ecclesiological train wreck.

Posted by Judith Maltby at Wednesday, 23 May 2012 at 11:50am BST

Can I make sure I get this right?
1. As well as priests in the C of E who do not accept the orders of other priests in the C of E, now there will be bishops who do not accept the episcopal ordination of other members of the episcopal bench, both male and female,nor do they accept the ordination or ministry of many of the priests in their diocese. eg. Chichester.
2. Is this a serious attempt by theologically trained bishops to avoid schism in the C O E? Surely it is fomenting it? There must come a point when the system sees that tolerance of dissent has reached its limit, and the dissenters must decide to form their own independent group, or join another where they can live with their consciences. I thought that was the point of the ordinariate?
3.I am bemused, as those refusing to accept the orders of women of those tainted by the ordination of women are themselves considered to have defective orders by the very people they wish to emulate and placate, ie. Rome. However, even there will not be safe for too long as the Roman Catholic Church begins to acknowledge its misogyny and patriarchal theology.

Posted by Gerry Reilly at Wednesday, 23 May 2012 at 12:13pm BST

What Beth and Rosalind said.

The house of bishops have messed up big time.

This cannot go forward with these dreadful ammendments, and their (unintended?) consequences.

Deeply unattractive all male closed shop, with the arrogance demonstrated so ably by, on this occasion, Peter Broadbent.

So much for semper reforandum

or should that be reforendum !

Posted by LaurenceR at Wednesday, 23 May 2012 at 12:58pm BST

Reformanda.

Hurling insults doesn't really fit the "thinking" Anglicans sobriquet, does it?

When you live day by day with the existing arrangements, as we do in London, you recognise that compromises have to be made. I believe neither in "headship" nor in "sacramental assurance". I believe them both to be fond imaginings imported from other denominations - free evangelicalism on the one hand and Roman Catholicism on the other. But I'm a bishop in a church where there are Christians who do believe those things, and I'm prepared to make room for them to stay in it, and not, like some more illiberal liberals, force them to leave. I don't either believe in the ecclesiastical Stalinism that masquerades as mono-episcopacy, and would force everyone in a diocese to relate to only one bishop. That, too, is a fairly recent fond invention, and is what has made this whole process so difficult. It's not an article of faith for the Church of England that you only have one bishop in a place. We manage quite well in our patch with two working side by side.

Judith's perfectly reasonable questions will need to be worked out (1) in the Code of Practice - what guidance will we give in relation to how the Diocesan Schemes will be drafted? and (2) in the Schemes themselves, which will vary according to the number of likely letters of request in the Diocese. Yes, it's pragmatic episcopacy, but our way of doing episcopacy has never been ecclesiologically pure (Royal Peculiars, Forces Chaplains, Area Schemes). The crucial issue for the integrity of women bishops is that nothing has changed in terms of their capacity to delegate. All we have done is spelt out what needs to happen when a parish asks for extended episcopal care. (And if anyone thought that "any old male bishop will do" was ever going to work, you do need to talk to the opponents a bit more! That was never going to work, and covering your ears and pretending that it isn't fundamental to what opponents need really isn't sensible)

Posted by Pete Broadbent at Wednesday, 23 May 2012 at 3:01pm BST

I am glad Pete Broadbent has laid his cards so openly on the table. They would be my cards too, if I had any to play. This deal has many advantages, and it is absolutely essential to maintain a sense of perspective.

Posted by John at Wednesday, 23 May 2012 at 7:07pm BST

"I look forward to Pete Broadbent and his friends brokering a deal for lesbian and gay people next, and an oh so practical and sensitive recognition and support of that integrity..."

Didn't you hear, LaurenceR? Bp Broadbent's boss ABY Sentamu just declared "Redefining marriage to include same-sex couples would benefit nobody."

In other words, "nobody" is getting going to get "practical and sensitive recognition and support" in the CofE. >:-/

Posted by JCF at Wednesday, 23 May 2012 at 9:36pm BST

Further considerations for FiF, Reform and possibly Pete Braodbent :

http://maggidawn.com/top-ten-reasons-why-men-shouldnt-be-ordained/

Posted by LaurenceR at Wednesday, 23 May 2012 at 10:08pm BST

Pete, clearly Bishops take into account the expressed wishes of a petitioning parish - that already happens in provinces that have female bishops with a single clause measure. It happens now under male bishops - not sure why it suddenly becomes necessary to have it in the Measure rather than the code of practice. It is offensive, divisive and the HofB may have thought it a grand plan to win over a few more votes in order to secure the legislation. But perhaps they really need to think about the fact that it has alienated a great many people who specifically requested that the House of Bishops choose not to exercise their perogative to amend. Who also pointed out very clearly that to do so would endanger the legislation by making the terms quite unacceptable to a number of pro- Women Bishop groups who were already uncomfortable the amount of compromise it contains. This was never about trying to force people to leave, it was about making room to include a group of people who were yet to be invited to the episcopal table. Shame on you for implying that to wish to have Women Bishops on the same terms as Men have enjoyed being bishops for generations is suddenly, ecclesiastical stalinism.

Posted by Lindsay Southern at Wednesday, 23 May 2012 at 10:18pm BST

Bishop Peter, you are defending the modern heresy that people are entitled by right to have a bishop who agrees with them about whatever happns to be their personal bugaboo. That is a fond thing vainly invented. It's not even imported from any other denomination because no othe denomination would be so daft.

Posted by Malcolm French+ at Wednesday, 23 May 2012 at 11:08pm BST

"I don't either believe in the ecclesiastical Stalinism that masquerades as mono-episcopacy, and would force everyone in a diocese to relate to only one bishop. - Pete Broadbent -

SO! Where does that leave the time-honoured tradition of the clergy vowing fealty to their diocesan bishop? Is Pete making up his own rules as he goes along?

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Thursday, 24 May 2012 at 1:28am BST

This has nothing to do with "the modern heresy that people are entitled by right to have a bishop who agrees with them." It has to do with continuing access to leadership that opposes WO.

One of the disconnects in this argument is that supporters of WO see the CoP as an accommodation for individuals while opponents desire an accommodation for theology. Liberals see it as a temporary accommodation to allow clergy currently serving to remain but only with the understanding that they won't be replaced. This is not acceptable to opponents who see themselves destined to expungement by slow attrition. That is, after all, the not-so-hidden agenda of supporters. They expect to win by driving all opponents from leadership. The laity opposed to WO (for whom no long-term accommodation is envisioned) are scheduled for reprogramming as clergy are replaced. That's the problem this amendment is supposed to address. Supporters understand that agenda, and that's why they react negatively. It defeats the understanding that clergy opposed to WO won't be replaced.

It won't work, of course. Nothing based upon "Trust us, because you have no other choice" can ever succeed. But you can understand why they need to address this problem.

carl jacobs

Posted by carl jacobs at Thursday, 24 May 2012 at 3:26am BST

@Ron - time honoured it may be, but not definitive. In London, they swear canonical obedience to both the Diocesan and the Area Bishop. Perfectly legal and perfectly workable.

Posted by Pete Broadbent at Thursday, 24 May 2012 at 11:25am BST

Interesting comments from Carl. On a lighter note ( not a bad thing with everyone, rightly to my mind ,steamed up ); when I was rector of St George's Bloomsbury an american family ( baptists as it turned out) arrived a little late for the morning eucharist having ( I discovered later) gone to Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church where they saw ( shock ,horror!) a woman in the pulpit!! It was the Sunday after Aug 15th so they got "Ye who own the faith of Jesus" as we processed out ....cant remember if they were singing along! When one considers some of the trials of institutional religion I often think ( now retired),"Well its given me a lot of laughs!"

Posted by Perry Butler at Thursday, 24 May 2012 at 12:52pm BST

Liberals see it as a temporary accommodation to allow clergy currently serving to remain but only with the understanding that they won't be replaced.'

Silly me. There I was thinking that the Church of England had voted to have women ministers over twenty years ago, and temporary pastoral measures were generously set in train to help the distressed folk against it. (NB. No such generosity was ever shown to those seeking ministry of women by those opposing, after initial votes against it.).

Now we are being told the dissidents wish to perpetuate their anti stance forever- this is not what was agreed.

We have even had the scandal of 'flying bishops' undermining the Church of England while in office, and creating a fifth column at Ebbsfleet and elsewhere; and then all 'poping en group', when it suited them and they no longer needed C of E stipends.

It is shocking that none of this is ever mentioned or seen as relevant to whether we want to perpetuate this kind of thing - and they have the gall to call this an 'integrity' !

Perhaps the ordination of women would be better discontinued asap rather than have this insulting farce.

Posted by Mary Marriott at Thursday, 24 May 2012 at 8:19pm BST

Carl. it is in every way a modern heresy.

The irreconcileable faux-catholics (and, frankly, faux-evangelicals) not only demand access to male clergy and to be assigned a male bishop. They demand that the male clergy and male bishop agree with them.

Sorry, lad. No one is entitled to have a bishop who agrees with them. I have yet to have a bishop who agrees with me on everything.

Or perhaps you could show me in the writings of Mr. Pusey or Mr. Keble or Mr. Neale where they ever claimed that they were entitled to have a bishop who agreed with them. Perhaps the unpublished Tract 91?

Posted by Malcolm French+ at Friday, 25 May 2012 at 7:12am BST

The "on grounds of theological conviction" phrase which people are complaining about references what is already in the Measure at Clause 3 (1). Interestingly, the phrase was inserted there during the Revision Committee precisely to prevent parishes passing a resolution for a letter of request on grounds other than their convictions that women should not be priests. It was part of the series of amendments which was drafted by the Archdeacon of Lewisham and Greenwich. So, supporters - you're arguing about something which was already in the Measure that WATCH and others urged us to pass. The House of Bishops amendment seeks to elucidate what might be required by a parish who submitted such a letter of request.

Posted by Pete Broadbent at Friday, 25 May 2012 at 11:23am BST

Pete Broadbent - the measure as now drafted requires the Code to deal with different theological convictions without specifying what those convictions might be. The impossibility of defining convictions of this kind was one reason we got the measure we did in its original form. It is now open to all kinds of pressure groups to argue that specific provision for their particular conviction should be explicit in the code. Previously the code could deal with convictions in a pastoral way. Now the measure brings the lawyers into the debate. And I don't see where it says that the theological convictions have to be convictions about the ordination or consecration of women.

Laws like this measure are not interpreted according to the intentions of those who propose them, but according to what they actually say. The Act of Synod gives us a history of misaligned intentions, and that is not a law in the same way that this measure will be.

Posted by Mark Bennet at Friday, 25 May 2012 at 2:54pm BST

Malcolm,

In order to engage properly with people, it is essential to understand their position and not to misrepresent it. We are not talking about people having bishops who 'agree with them' in some sort of trivialising sense. From the FiF point of view (which is not mine), a merely male bishop is not enough - it has to be a male bishop who takes the same view as they do on the WO issue (and no doubt on other 'Catholic' things - but that preeminently). The claim is perfectly consistent with their general position. It is not trivial. It is not trivially selfish or unreasonable. It is of a different order from agreeing or disagreeing with one's bishop on a host of other things.

Father Ron,

A propos another thread, Robert doesn't support women priests or women bishops. He merely thinks them logical within a Protestant sect such as he thinks the C of E to be, and within that context he thinks there can be discrimination against women.

Posted by John at Friday, 25 May 2012 at 7:17pm BST

Pete - what then do you make of Forward in Faith's response to these amendments? They seem to think that the amendment under discussion adds to what was in the Measure. Are they wrong? And if they are, who will tell them?

Posted by Rosalind at Friday, 25 May 2012 at 10:23pm BST

John, I'm not misrepresenting the FiF position at all. They assert that a male bishop ceases to be a legitimate bishop should he disagree with them. It is heretical.

Posted by Malcolm French+ at Saturday, 26 May 2012 at 6:48am BST

John,
as I just said on another thread - FiF's concern is to ensure Apostolic succession. That means they need a male bishop who was ordained deacon, priest and bishop by another male bishop.

Right thinking is not part of the ontological change argument.

Posted by Erika Baker at Saturday, 26 May 2012 at 4:17pm BST

Erika,

I understand that.

Posted by John at Sunday, 27 May 2012 at 1:59pm BST
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