Agonisingly long, slow, anachronistic debate about women bishops finally reaches draft proposal stage, nearly
The Church of England is expected to pave the way for the consecration of women bishops when it publishes final proposals this week. The legislation, to be debated by the General Synod in July, will trigger a departure of some traditionalists to the Roman Catholic Church.
Sources told The Times that the legislation for women bishops would include no statutory provision for opponents. Instead, arrangements to allow traditionalist parishes to opt out of the oversight of a woman bishop are expected to be included in a voluntary code of practice. This will not be enough to placate a small number of leading Anglo-Catholics who fear that female bishops will “taint” the historic catholicity of the Church of England.The proposed legislation is to be sent to members of the synod on Friday.
Three Anglo-Catholic bishops in the Church of England, including the Bishop of Fulham, the Right Rev John Broadhurst, met advisers of the Pope in Rome last week to discuss setting up an “Ordinariate” in England under the scheme announced by Benedict XVI for disaffected Anglicans.