From The Daily Telegraph this afternoon [here]
By John Bingham, Religious Affairs Editor
"Members of the Church’s General Synod are due to take a final vote on the historic proposal when it meets in York next month, bringing to an end a tortuous 12-year process.
But senior figures in the Church are now bracing themselves for the possibility that the measure could collapse altogether after the current bishops inserted a last-minute concession to traditionalists.
The Church has struggled for many years to agree a way of ordaining women bishops while enabling those who object to the female authority on doctrinal grounds to stay within it.
The main group campaigning for female bishops has rejected the latest concession as a compromise-too-far and some of the backers have now withdrawn their support altogether. Speaking in London today William Fittall, secretary general of the Synod, said there was now uncertainty for the first time about whether a final decision could be reached at the July Synod.
He said there was now recognition that the measure might be rejected altogether – meaning that it could not be reconsidered for another five years – or adjourned to be reconsidered by bishops ahead of a special crisis Synod meeting in November.
“What I think has changed over the past few weeks since the House of Bishops met in May is that a new uncertainty has arisen as to whether the General Synod will in fact make a final decision in July,” he said.
He added: “All the previous votes in the synod and in the dioceses shows that there is overwhelming support for women becoming bishops.
“What the Church has struggled with for some years is what particular set of provisions might be best calculated so that the legislation can be good news to as many people as possible and that remains a difficult and contested issue.
“And the fact is that until a two-thirds majority is achieved in each house for a particular piece of legislation the question of admitting women to the episcopate will remain unfinished business in the Church of England.”