Way back in 1993, when promises were made about a “Period of Reception” following the legislation for the ordination of women I, stupidly, believed those who made them. Anglican Catholics were, we were told, valued members of the Church of England and the then proposed Act of Synod confirmed that provision would be made for those of us who were unable to accept the innovation of women priests. The Act of Synod became that provision and enshrined safe guards for those of us who wanted to have Bishops who had not ordained women.Traditionlist priests were told that they would still be able to be appointed to senior positions including Bishoprics.
It didn’t take long for me to realise that many of the promises that had been made were broken by our Fathers-in-God as one by one parishes who had opted for resolutions A, B and C were picked of usually during interregnums when Parochial Church Councils were pressured and told that the only way they would get a new incumbent was to rescind the resolutions. Freeholds have often been suspended with the same objectives. Few traditionlists have been appointed to any senior positions. When did the period of reception end?
So, when it became clear that General Synod was to consider elevating women to the Episcopate, I had no real hope that any provision would be made for those who cannot, and will not, accept women as Bishops. And although the decision has yet to be finalised at the July Synod I am now convinced that Catholics will be offered nothing that they can, in conscience, accept. It is very clear that Catholics are no longer wanted in the Church of England as it continues its liberal agenda and it slips ever more quickly down the slippery slope of becoming little more than a protestant sect.
The irony is that the Holy Father has generously offered us everything we asked the Church of England to provide and which it has failed to do.