Friday, 30 May 2008

Church Times: 'Chaos’ warning as rumours fly after Bishops’ meeting

CAMPAIGNERS who are opposed to women bishops warned of financial chaos and a mass walk-out, if rumours prove to be true that the Church of England House of Bishops voted last week to consecrate women bishops without making acceptable provision for those who object.


On Tuesday, however, a Church of England spokesman refused to confirm whether the Bishops wanted a simple “code of conduct” for objectors, in order to keep the legislation to a minimum, and had rejected the idea of a third province. He also declined to comment on whether they wanted to end the right of parishes to opt out of the ministry of women priests.

“The House of Bishops had a full discussion of the Manchester report [News, 2 May], and agreed that the options in the report should be debated by the Synod in July. The House agreed a motion to act as a starting point for the Synod debate. The wording of this will be issued with the other Synod papers next month,” the spokesman said.

The Archbishops of Canterbury and York would set out in a covering note “the considerations [the House of Bishops] believes that the Synod will need to weigh in coming to a decision”.

Two online petitions, one for male clergy (including retired bishops), and the other for laity, have been set up by Thinking Anglicans to support legislation for women bishops that does not give legal protection to objectors. They had collected 361 and 302 signatures respectively by Wednesday. Read more
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