Printer Friendly

England ponders women bishops: Church's synod will debate report next February.


(ENI)--The Church of England will be "increasingly isolated and anachronistic" unless it accepts women as bishops, a house of bishops working party which looked into the issue of women in the episcopate has concluded.

"Gender-blind equality of opportunity will remain a central feature of Western society. The Church of England will not be able to commend the gospel effectively flits structures embody sexism in a way that contemporary society no longer finds acceptable," the working party said in its report, Women Bishops in the Church of England?, published Nov. 2.

Women have been ordained as priests in the Church of England since 1994, following a decision two years previously.

However, women bishops do not follow automatically from the 1992 decision to accept women as priests, states the report, which presents practical and theological arguments both for and against women bishops, but makes no formal recommendations.

The report also predicts that Roman Catholic and Orthodox churches will feel pressure for the ordination of women to all ministerial offices "in the longer term."

The Church of England's governing general synod will debate the report in February 2005 as the first stage of a process that could see women consecrated as bishops from 2009.

In response to a question from Ecumenical News International about relations with the Vatican, Michael Nazir-Ali, the bishop of Rochester and working party chair, said there were already "significant movements in Orthodoxy and Roman Catholicism for ordaining women."

Women bishops have been accepted in principle in 14 out of 37 provinces in the worldwide Anglican Communion, although they have been appointed only in three--Aotearoa/New Zealand, Canada and the United States.

In England, the traditionalist movement, Forward In Faith, said the working party had "diligently and even-handedly" examined the issue, but reiterated its call for a "third province" if the consecration of women bishops goes ahead.

The province would exist alongside the two existing Church of England provinces of Canterbury and York, and would minister to those unable to accept the authority of women bishops.
COPYRIGHT 2004 General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2004, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Title Annotation:World
Publication:Anglican Journal
Date:Dec 1, 2004
Previous Article:Fashion 'bible' eyes teens' faith.
Next Article:General Secretary thanks ECUSA for girt.

Related Articles
Controversy delays vote for new bishop: `cooling off' period sought after bitter debate.
Australia ponders women bishops.
Synod speaker sparks debate.
Lutheran bishops join Anglicans for meeting.
C of E okays sex document.
Anglican muddle: defer homosexual "marriage" but affirm sanctity of same-sex.
Commission will decide on doctrine question.
Change is imminent.
C of E one step closer to women bishops: Vatican warns move could jeopardize full communion.

Terms of use | Privacy policy | Copyright © 2021 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters |