Thursday, 22 November 2012

More on women bishops for Wales

From the BBC [here]
The Archbishop of Wales says he hopes to be able to ordain women bishops in the Church in Wales "before very long". Dr Barry Morgan said a bill on the matter would be brought in next September. However, even if backed, it would not be brought into force until pastoral provision had been put in place for those who are opposed, he added. Earlier, Lord Harries of Pentregarth, a former Bishop of Oxford, called on the Church in Wales to take the lead. Speaking to BBC Wales, Dr Morgan said: "My hope is that we will be able to ordain women as bishops in the Church in Wales, at least in principle, before very long." It'll be September next year that we'll bring the bill hopefully enabling women to be ordained as bishops. Even if we accept them in principle it can't come into force until there is some pastoral provision for those who are opposed."
So here we have it -"some pastoral provision." 
Surely the lesson from the Church of England this week is that "some provision" is not enough; it needs to be adequate provision - the provision traditionalists need in order to survive and grow - in order to be faithful to the full range of Anglicanism's own historic traditions. 
Following the unwarranted suppression of the post of Provincial Assistant Bishop some four years ago, there is considerable - and understandable - suspicion among traditionalists in Wales about the projected two-tier synodical process which has been agreed in the province in order to advance the ordination of women to the episcopate.
The bishops of the Church in Wales should start talking constructively  to the opponents of women bishops, both Catholic and Evangelical, now about the future. This would do much to restore an element of trust and help  allay concerns that the two-stage bill procedure is just another cunning political manoeuvre on the part of those who wish to impose their own liberal agenda upon the Church. 

1 comment:

  1. From the CofE Agenda notice:
    "The Agenda provides for the Synod to deal with the final stages of the major legislative process designed to make it possible for women to be bishops in the Church of England while also making some provision for those who, for theological reasons, will not be able to receive their ministry."

    The positioning of the Church of England and Church of Wales is similar but I note Dr Morgan refers to 'pastoral provision' whereas PEVs are still in place in England.
    Sacramental assurance in Wales still looks extremely doubtful.


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