News for Week Ending 9/17/2012
English bishops attempt to assure passage of women bishops legislationThe House of Bishops of the Church of England has dropped the controversial clause 5(1)(c) that threatened to have women in the General Synod voting against the measure intended to enable women to become bishops. The bishops have substituted a clause that requires that the theological views of parishes requesting a male bishop or priest because of their opposition to ordained women be respected. The previous wording adopted by the bishops required that the choice of male bishop or priest be consistent with the theological views of the parish. The wording was suggested by a female priest and will likely enable the legislation to pass when the General Synod meets November 19–21, 2012. According to Episcopal News Service, for the women bishops measure to pass, a two-thirds majority is needed among bishops, clergy, and laity.
The press release about the change, as well as an explanation from Archbishop Rowan Williams can be found here. The offending text that has been replaced was published by Thinking Anglicans in May.
Role of Canterbury questionedArchbishop of Canterbury Rowan William, who will step down to return to an academic position in December, made news via an interview with the Telegraph, described by some as an exit interview. The interview can be found here, but related story also published September 8, 2012, in the Telegraph, caused a stir. The archbishop suggested that his job is too big for one person, and perhaps a position should be created whose job is devoted to the day-to-day affairs of the Anglican Communion, allowing the Archbishop of Canterbury to devote his attention to the Church of England. Episcopal News Service quoted Secretary General of the Anglican Consultative Council Kenneth Kearon—Kearon is not technically “Secretary General of the Anglican Communion”—as insisting that there are no plans to create such a post.
The Telegraph also published a video of the archbishop in which he criticizes the church’s approach to homosexuality.