Vatican official: Anglican women bishops an ‘enormous obstacle’ to Christian unity
July 16, 2010
In an interview published July 15, Bishop Brian Farrell, secretary of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, called the prospect of the appointment of women bishops in the Church of England an “enormous obstacle” to Christian unity.
“All the Churches of the first millennium, Catholic, Eastern and Orthodox, state that only men can be ordained,” he said. “These Churches see the ordination of women as an illegitimate abandonment of authentic Tradition.”
“It saddens us that on this point the Anglican Communion has left what we consider the essential Tradition of the Church since its beginning,” he continued. “But the process began a long time ago.”
“We will continue the ecumenical dialogue with a realism that accepts things as they are and is aware that the road ahead is long and arduous. Knowing, however, that dialogue is a task imposed by Christ himself and sustained by the grace of the Holy Spirit, soul of the Church of Christ.”
Bishop Farrell emphasized even apart from the provisions of Anglicanorum Coetibus-- the 2009 document that paved the way for Anglican communities to be received into the Catholic Church-- individual Anglicans may be received into the Church in local parishes at any time they wish.
- How Women Bishops Affect Anglican-Catholic Dialogue: Interview With Secretary of Vatican's Unity Council (Zenit)