|Bishop elect, the Rev Pat Storey Photo: PA|
From a report in the Telegraph, the Rev Pat Storey, rector of St Augustine's in Derry, has been 'elected' by the Church of Ireland as the new Bishop of Meath and Kildare. The appointment was 'passed by the House of Bishops after the Episcopal Electoral College failed to elect a successor in May'.
Picking up the story, Hayley Dixon the Telegraph reporter emphasises the pressure on the Church of England: The Church of England is now increasingly isolated the only Anglican church in the British Isles to remain opposed to the idea, and Mrs Storey's appointment is likely to intensify pressure for the church to resolve its crisis over the issue.
I am not sufficiently familiar with the politics of the Church of Ireland, or in Scotland for that matter, but in England and Wales, despite assurances to the contrary, very rarely is anyone appointed to the episcopate unless they subscribe to the current fad for advancing the cause of women's ordination. I have lost count of the number of clergy who changed sides when it became a bread and butter issue rather than Bread and Wine.
A report in the Church Times today puts the recent vote in the Church in Wales in a different light from the claims printed in the official journal Highlights making it look ever more likely as a fix: "The debate on the amendment lasted longer than the debate on the Bill itself. It was passed by 72 votes in favour to 46 against. There were six abstentions...The House of Bishops declined their constitutional right to consult privately before voting, and supported the Bill unanimously."
A two-stage approach had been endorsed by the Governing Body last September but an amendment tabled by the Archdeacon of Llandaff, the Ven. Peggy Jackson, replaced those clauses with new ones instructing the Bench of Bishops to agree a code of practice without delay. The fact that the bishops went ahead and voted unanimously for the amended Bill without consultation suggested to some that there had been an element of collusion in the process. I am not surprised.
|Just a game for some! Photo: Church Times|
After the vote the Archbishop said "we will produce the Code of Practice. That's what the Bill says, that's what we've been entrusted to do, and that is what we will do." From the Church Times report: "In the debate on the amended Bill, the Bishop of St Asaph went through some of the theological arguments against women bishops. "I'm not sure if I find these arguments shocking, or laughable, but it is not a tradition that I can defend....Arguments about complementarity and the representation of the persona Christi were "essentially modern, and only came to the fore when the older arguments had lost their force", he said. "All this is beginning to look to me like a prejudice looking for a theology rather than a theology governing tradition." Hardly encouraging for those now forced to look to a code of practice. In response Canon Tudor Hughes (St Asaph) argued that the amended Bill took away the opportunity for "members of the Governing Body to explore together effectively the provision that traditionalists need to secure a lasting place in the Church in Wales.
"We were given an assistant provincial bishop: that was removed. We were given a Bill with a second Bill: that was removed. How can we be assured that the code of practice won't be removed? We have been assured that we have an honoured place. It doesn't feel like that."
Next stop the Church of England where the Holy Spirit is being similarly manipulated. Press and public will continue to voice their faithless anger aiding the revisionists to produce their required result. One has to wonder what these people actually believe.