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Bid to approve woman bishops fails in Church of England synod

Catholic World News - November 21, 2012

A proposal to ordain women as bishops for the Church of England fell just short of approval in a surprise vote on November 20.

The proposal won the required two-thirds approval from the synod’s house of bishops and the house of clergy, but was four votes short of the required margin in the house of laity.

The result is likely to prolong tensions within the Church of England and the broader Anglican communion. Opponents of the measure had argued that ordaining women as bishops would be a critical watershed, since tradition-minded Anglicans would not recognize the validity of the women’s episcopal orders.

The outgoing Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Rowan Williams, admitted his dismay and “deep personal sadness” at the result of the vote. His designated successor, Bishop Justin Welby, said the vote marked a “very grim day” in the history of the Anglican communion.

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  • Posted by: R. Spanier (Catholic Canadian) - Nov. 22, 2012 12:28 PM ET USA

    "Mr Speaker, it is my earnest hope that during the time I serve the Queen – whose appointment I am – this House and the Church of England, as Second Church Estates Commissioner, it will prove possible for me to be able to bring before this House a measure that will enable women to be consecrated bishops in the Church of England." Sir Tony Baldry, Member of Parliament http://www.tonybaldry.co.uk/

  • Posted by: TheJournalist64 - Nov. 21, 2012 7:51 PM ET USA

    Some scholar better than I needs to research the proposition that it was the Anglicans' acceptance of divorce and remarriage, and later, contraception, that led to today's widespread misunderstanding that the liberal agenda inevitably will be adopted by everyone.

  • Posted by: geoffreysmith1 - Nov. 21, 2012 4:51 PM ET USA

    We Catholics have no problem with this. If the Church of England wishes to appoint women as its overseers and district managers, they are fully entitled to do so. Just don't call them bishops and priests, that's all, because the Anglican orders are null and void, and such clergy are unable to act as priests as we understand that term.

  • Posted by: AgnesDay - Nov. 21, 2012 4:26 PM ET USA

    I never fail to be amazed at the resilience of the Anglican laity. We may be a while in seeing them at our table.

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