The BBC Radio 4 programme Profile featured the Bishop of Fulham last week. Here is the BBC blurb about the programme:
The Rt Rev John Broadhurst, the Bishop of Fulham and chairman of Forward in Faith, the mainly Anglo-Catholic organisation opposed to the ordination of women. Traditionalists like Bishop Broadhurst were left more isolated this week after the Church of England’s ruling body the General Synod moved one step nearer to the concecration of women bishops. Those close to him say frequent accusations of misogyny have been wounding but are completely misplaced.
Listen to the 15 minute programme via this page.
The programme’s presenter, Mary Ann Sieghart wrote about it in her latest column for the Independent newspaper, Women on top? You’ve got to be joking:
…Even in the Church of England, which now has women priests and is close to accepting women as bishops, the hatred and vilification are shocking. At last weekend’s meeting of the General Synod, some women priests were spat at. And a male bishop who appeared on the radio programme I made complained that the Synod had now been “swamped” by part-time women clergy or – as he put it – “ladies with time on their hands”.
Hearing a word like “swamped”, you might expect the House of Clergy to have been taken over by women. In fact, they account for just 39 of 197 members. In other words, men still take up 80 per cent of the places. But if women are seen as threatening and monstrous – as in that priest’s painting – even their minority presence is hugely amplified.
This overestimation of the power and representation of women is commonplace. Research shows that when women speak in the classroom exactly 50 per cent of the time, both men and women think they spoke more. When I took part in an internet debate recently about whether Oxford University was sexist, James Kingston, president of the Oxford Union, said: “Most of the History tutors at Christ Church seem to be women.” In fact, there are six women and six men there…