Thinking Anglicans

General Synod agenda – press reports on women bishops proposals

Updated Saturday

Madeleine Davies Church Times ‘Trust but verify’ summarises new women-bishops package, says Fittall

Sam Jones The Guardian Church of England could have female bishops by 2014, says committee

Edward Malnick The Telegraph Ombudsman could rule on Church of England disputes

Thomas Penny Bloomberg Church of England May Back Women Bishops as Soon as Next Year


The Bishop of Rochester, James Langstaff, chair of the Steering Committee was interviewed on the BBC Radio 4 Today Programme this morning. You can listen to the programme here; the interview starts at 01:47:54.

Kevin Rawlinson The Guardian Church of England ombudsman could resolve disputes over women bishops

BBC Synod to consider women bishops ‘ombudsman’

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Rev'd Laurence Roberts
Rev'd Laurence Roberts
10 years ago

If the Church is sincere similar arrangements and procedures – mediation etc., will next be employed to bring together those who reject lgbt people in ministry or marriage etc together with those of us who do not reject ‘them’.

Father Ron Smith
10 years ago

“Thirteen did, but the Rev Paul Benfield of the synod’s Anglo-Catholic wing and Susie Leafe, director of the conservative evangelical Reform group, abstained from the vote.” – Guardian Report Despite William Fittal’s encouragement that 13 of the 15 members of the Steering Committee voted for the ‘safeguards’, it is plain that the abstention of Benfield and Leafe from the actual voting gives evidence of some opposition to the arrangements from within the Committee. Why is this one issue – the ministry of women – so worrying to the two extremes of churchmanship in the Church of England that they have… Read more »

Simon Kershaw
Simon Kershaw
10 years ago

I think Ron reads too much into the voting. The fact is that other members of Reform and FiF on the committee did vote with the majority to back the proposal. The two that did not do so abstained rather than voting against. If this pattern is followed at the General Synod, with those who voted against the earlier legislation instead voting in favour or abstaining, then the legislation will be carried easily. What might derail it is the statement on headship: including it is highly problematic; trying to remove it may well upset the careful balance that has clearly… Read more »

Simon Sarmiento
10 years ago

I would urge all prospective commenters to read the actual report of the steering committee, which explains the proposals in a lot more detail than any newspaper article possibly can. This includes for example, an explanation of why two members abstained in the final voting. The report itself can be found at

Yes I know it is 34 pages. But it really needs to be read in full to understand the proposal that is being put before the General Synod.

10 years ago

This looks like a truly very sincere and heartfelt attempt at a real, workable compromise by all concerned. Were I still in England I don’t know that it would be enough to enable me to remain Anglican, but I suspect it will be for many FinF folk. It is at the least, I think, a remarkable piece of work by the group given where things stood and the feelings running high last November. It’s worth noting, Fr. Ron, that the abstentions were not from agreement with the content of the report, but from “commending” the legislation to Synod, because those… Read more »

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