New user? Register here:
Email Address:
Password:
Retype Password:
First Name:
Last Name:
Existing user? Login here:
 
 
UK >

Williams urges waverers to back women-bishops Measure

by a staff reporter

THE Archbishop of Canterbury has begun a campaign to persuade General Synod members to back the new women-bishops legislation when it returns to debate it next month.

Writing in the Church Times this week, he addresses waverers, those who find the legislation "not quite good enough, or not quite simple enough". To vote against the legislation, which he admits is "not perfect", would be to risk "committing us to a period of continued and perhaps intensified internal conflict, with no clearly guaranteed outcome . . . a period of publicly embarrassing and internally draining indecision".

Dr Williams pleads with Synod members to be clear about what the legislation does and doesn't say, ascribing the failure of the Bishops' earlier amendment to a mistaken assumption about the rights that it gave parishes.

There was now an "equally mistaken assumption that the word 'respect' in the new amendment ( News, 21 September) is little more than window-dressing.

"The truth is that the word does have legal content. If you're required to show 'respect', you need to be able to demonstrate that what you do takes account in practice of someone's conviction. You will need to show that it has made a difference to how you act; it doesn't just recommend an attitude or state of mind ('with all due respect . . .').

"The word leaves enough flexibility for appropriate responses to different circumstances, but it isn't so general as to be toothless."

Dr Williams argues that "rectifying the anomaly" of having ordained women as deacons and priests while denying them access to the episcopate is good news for women, for men, for the Church, and for the world. "Our challenge has been, and still is, to try to make it good news even for those within our fellowship who have conscientious doubts."

Dr Williams was due to fly to Papua New Guinea and New Zealand on Thursday, for the forthcoming meeting of the Anglican Consultative Council. In his absence, Lambeth Palace is organising a series of YouTube videos from supporters of the new legislation.

Comment
News: FiF asks Synod to reject legislation and start to listen 

Job of the week

Reporter

London and Home Counties

REPORTER Salary range: £21,000 to £27,000, depending on experience Closing date for applications: 1 June Interviews: Friday 12 June A full-time reporter is sought to work in the Church Times's ...  Read More

Signup for job alerts
Top feature

Grey beard — but no loon

Grey beard — but no loon

A study day on The Rime of the Ancient Mariner taught Malcolm Doney the link between poetry and theology  Read More

Question of the week
Does your church engage in this level of social action?

To prevent multiple voting, we now ask readers to be logged in. This is free, quick and easy, honestly. Click here to login or register

Top comment

How about trying the politics of love?

Relationships, not strong leadership, should be at the heart of political life, argues Justin Lewis-Anthony  Read More

Tue 26 May 15 @ 11:48
NEW:Is CofE near "endgame" of divisions over sexuality? We interview @traceybyrne1964 of @LGCM http://t.co/QSwyV6plm9 http://t.co/q0RQtDo9sR

Tue 26 May 15 @ 11:46
The Archbishop of Canterbury @JustinWelby is visiting China 27 May - 5 June http://t.co/1ioGOLbcrg