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If there is a schism, it is the innovators’ creation

by
07 April 2009

iStock

From the Revd John Greatbatch SSC
Sir, — Ruth McCurry in her letter (3 April) uses terms like “schism” against those of us who cannot accept the ordination of women and the consecration of women as bishops.

A few years ago, someone asked me if I felt at all guilty about creating a “schism” in the Church of England by the position that I hold regarding women’s ordination. My reply was, and still is, that schism is created when someone goes off in a completely different direction from that which has been previously upheld and believed.

I, for my part, still firmly hold the historical traditions and beliefs of the Anglican Church as part of the one holy Catholic and apostolic Church into which I was baptised, when my parents made promises for me, which I personally confirmed at my confirmation, and promised to keep at my ordination.

I have not in any way created schism in the Church of England, as my faith and beliefs have not altered: I have kept firmly to the traditional and historical path of the Church of England.

Perhaps those who brought about and supported innovation in the nature of the priesthood in 1992 and subsequently have supported and proposed innovation in the episcopate in the Church of England should ask themselves about the schism that they have caused. It is they who have taken a different direction.

JOHN GREATBATCH
Clerical chairman for Forward in Faith in the diocese of Truro
The Vicarage, Church Road
Charlestown, St Austell
Cornwall PL25 3NS

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