The bishops of the Anglican Church of Australia recently agreed a Protocol about Women in the Episcopate.
The text of this document can be found as a PDF file on the national church website, here.
It is also reproduced in full below the fold.
AUSTRALIAN ANGLICAN BISHOPS’ PROTOCOL
No. 011 YEAR: 2008
WOMEN IN THE EPISCOPATE
1. As bishops of the Anglican Church of Australia, we recognise that the ministry of ordained women has been accepted in many dioceses of this Church, and also acknowledge that there are those who, for various reasons and to varying degrees, are unable to accept women in the ordained ministry.
2. We recognise the good faith of those who support the ordination and consecration of women and of those who cannot receive these developments, and pledge that those who hold either conviction will continue to have a valued and respected place in this Church.
3. We resolve to nurture the highest possible level of collegiality as bishops, seeking to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
4. We affirm that all people are made in the image of God, and expressly reject any intolerance or unjust discrimination against any member of this Church on the grounds of gender, since all are one in Christ Jesus, while acknowledging that diverse biblical and theological views on the place of gender in the order of creation and the church are genuinely held.
5. We affirm that episcopal ministry should be available to every community of faith and every member of this Church, whatever their belief as to the acceptability of a woman holding office as a bishop, and that the diocesan bishop will ensure that pastorally sensitive and appropriate episcopal ministry is provided.
6. We affirm that every diocesan bishop and every bishop providing episcopal ministry within a diocese should be mutually accountable in collegial solidarity with his or her episcopal colleagues for ensuring that there are reasonable and appropriate arrangements for episcopal ministry. Accordingly, we encourage all dioceses who desire to appoint or elect women as bishops to make provision for reasonable and appropriate episcopal ministry, addressing matters including the following:
a. arrangements for episcopal visitation, confirmation and ordination;
b. provisions for matters of discipline and pastoral succession;
c. procedures through which a community of faith may request the provision of this ministry; and
d. provision about the manner in which the costsofproviding this ministry are to be borne.
We also note the proposed provisions for alternative episcopal ministry in the Bill for a Church Law (Further Clarification) Canon 2004 and commend these to the dioceses for consideration in developing “reasonable and appropriate arrangements” with a degree of continuity across the Anglican Church of Australia.
7. We recommend that the custom of the Metropolitan or Primate acting as chief consecrator should be varied to the extent necessary when the Metropolitan or Primate is a woman or when a woman is to be consecrated.
8. We encourage Metropolitans, when planning consecration services, to consider that for some it will be important that three of the consecrating bishops are men, and we also pledge to act with respect for one another in the ordering of services of consecration.