Thursday, 12 December 2013

An initial Society reaction to Pilling

A somewhat non-committal statement about a forthcoming statement from the Bishop of Pontefract on behalf of the Bishops of the Society:
The Pilling Report: Statement by the Council of Bishops of the Society
The Chairman of the Council of Bishops of the Society has issued the following statement:
The Report of the House of Bishops' Working Group on Human Sexuality (the Pilling Report) is an important piece of work which deserves careful consideration. We encourage our clergy and people to read it and reflect upon it prayerfully.
We note that the Report proposes no change in the doctrine of the Church of England and that its practical recommendations remain, at this stage, recommendations to the House of Bishops.
Those of us who are members of the Church of England's College of Bishops will be discussing it with other members of the College in January, and we shall also be discussing it at our own meeting in February. We plan to comment more fully after those discussions.
On behalf of the Council
The Rt Revd Tony Robinson

In the event, of course, that The Society's bishops or Forward in Faith itself should wish to distance themselves politely from the Pilling Report's recommendations, they will have a certain diplomatic tightrope to tread, given that the Bishop of Fulham was among the report's signatories.
Look for nuance, however delicate - I hope to be proved wrong, but it's probably now all that can be hoped for.... 

I most likely shouldn't say this, but I'm going to. We are very slow to learn. It is precisely in this way that radical ecclesial agendas are furthered, particularly at a sensitive  'political'  moment when Anglican Catholics are anxious both to remain fully involved in the mainstream of their Church's deliberations and also deeply concerned not to rock the synodical boat: co-opt a honest and highly theologically literate traditionalist and then bind him to a report's 'reformist' recommendations hand and foot. 

A cynical response? No: it's how ecclesiastical 'liberals' operate and it's also, regrettably,  how 'conservative' oppositions are divided.....  time after time - in the U.S. A. , Scandinavia... England .... the list lengthens. 


  1. In some ways this is a more "explosive" issue than women priests and the thin edge of a wedge which surely will end up with the "marriage" of same sex couples in church. +Fulham is naive and of course was ordained after 1992 which might explain why. The previous incumbent of Fulham would not have allowed himself to get into this position. But the present "Society" are appeasers and seem to want not to rock the boat and to accept the crumbs dropped from the synodical table. Shame on them and sympathy for all this who have been mislead into thinking that what the CoE stood for can continue. Just look at Scandanavia and the US as examples.

  2. Fulham is an appeaser but a very selfish one

  3. Quoth the Church of Sweden to the Church of England, "Eram quod es, sum quod eris ..."

  4. Indisputably the case. But why is no one here capable of learning the recent lessons from Scandinavia and the U.S.?


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