|Photo: Getty Images|
There is something about this image that makes me feel deeply uncomfortable. Perhaps it is because a person is the focus of attention. It has been used many times to illustrate articles about the ordination of women, most recently here under the heading 'The Church of England is on the brink of resolving its 13-year battle to introduce women bishops'. As the Telegraph puts it: "Under the new proposals, an independent ombudsman would be appointed to intervene when traditionalist parishes complain they are not sufficiently “protected” from women bishops’ authority. Leading opponents of female bishops believe the measure will “go sailing through” this week’s debate and on to final approval by next year or 2015".
Claiming insider knowledge, he testified as to what was meant:
The dissembling Statement of guiding principles in GS 1924 should act as a warning that what we are dealing with is politics, not the faith of the Church. If trust is to be of the essence for the future, the past does not augur well but one thing is clear, those within the Church of England who, on grounds of theological conviction, are unable to receive the ministry of women bishops or priests cannot in all conscience vote in favour of women bishops or even abstain. That we have had to fight, fight and fight again to save the Church we love should be proof of that.