It has been customary for Orthodox bishops to be invited
to participate in the consecration of Church of England bishops.
Will this be appropriate when female bishops come to be
The third guiding principle of the House of Bishops' Declaration
on Women Bishops is rather forthright: "Since it [the Church of
England] continues to share the historic episcopate with other
Churches, including the Roman Catholic Church, the Orthodox Church
and those provinces of the Anglican Communion which continue to
ordain only men as priests or bishops, the Church of England
acknowledges that its own clear decision on ministry and gender is
set within a broader process of discernment within the Anglican
Communion and the whole Church of God."
This repeated verbatim in the circular from the Archbishop of
Canterbury to the Pope and the Orthodox patriarchs, and comes
rather close to telling them that we are the ones in step.
I, therefore, have no doubt whatsoever that such invitations
will continue to be issued. The question is whether they will be
Given that Jesus exhorted his followers to visit those
in prison, why do so few senior clergy or bishops make regular
visits to prison chaplaincies? Are those in prison not also part of
a diocesan structure? A. I.
A priest who regularly presides at requiem masses
recently said that a requiem was not appropriate in relation to a
dead baby. Why? G. S.
It is said that, in the 1930s, my great-uncle killed
himself, and the C of E in Lincolnshire insisted he be buried in
unconsecrated ground. But the law had been changed in 1823 to allow
churchyard burial, with some restrictions, and then, without any
restriction, by the Interments (Felo de se) Act 1882. What
was the policy? Could there be any truth in the story? M.
Out of the Question, Church Times, 3rd floor, Invicta
House, 108-114 Golden Lane, London EC1Y 0TG.