Tomorrow General Synod will debate and vote on the Measure to introduce the consecration of women as Bishops in the Church of England. This is without any legally binding provision for those, who on the basis of scripture, reason and theology, are unable to accept that women can be Bishops (or for that matter priests and if they can’t be one they can’t be the other) In the future, should the legislation be passed there will be a Code of Practice which can’t be decided until after the passing of such legislation. So nobody will be aware of what that will contain except supporters of the measure have already stated that they will oppose any further provision for traditionalists and we will have to make do with the provision that diocesan bishops will have to have regard to the situation with objecting parishes.
The new measure has the Appleby wording which uses the word “respect” – i.e Diocesan Bishops will be required to respect traditionalists theological problems with women bishops/priests. The first problem will be that, whilst some will be willing to be co-operative, past experience shows that some will not. And if that is the case, the only avenue open will be means of a judicial review; an expensive option that few, if any, will be able to afford.
If find it totally incredible that those in favour of this innovation, are unable to see that past promises should be kept and that proper, and acceptable provision should be offered to those to whom those promises were originally made. If they can’t keep previous promises it doesn’t bode well for the future should this “unfair, unstable and incoherent” legislation be passed. (Words in italics from the Catholic Group in General Synod). I hope and pray that the Measure will fail to get the necessary two thirds majority.