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Monday, 7 July 2014

Feminists of faith

Symbolic of the shroud that covered Christ, the Holy Table at the time of
 the Ministry of the Sacrament shall be covered with a fair white linen cloth
- subject to LGBT limitations?

In November 2012 the Evening Standard published a piece "God girls: who'll be the first female bishop?" The author wrote: "One of the first problems facing the new Archbishop of Canterbury is how to end the battle in the Church over women bishops. In the ultimate boys’ club, feminists of faith long to see a woman wearing a mitre". She went on to list the four top contenders as the Rev Rose Hudson-Wilkin, Rev Lucy Winkett, Rev Jane Hedges and in fourth place, "Canon Rosie Harper, vicar of Great Missenden and Chaplain to the Bishop of Buckingham, opera-lover". She continued. "Harper is media-savvy, writing for the Guardian and tweeting regularly. On the issue of female bishops, she has said that women are 'spoken about as the problem and not really valued for what they contribute' ". 

That is not surprising given the dishonesty with which she and other campaigners, particularly members of Women and the Church (WATCH),  misrepresent their opponents as 'men who are afraid of women' ignoring the fact that significant numbers of women bitterly regret what these campaigners have done to the Church.

Canon Rosie Harper at York General Synod in 2012
         Guardian Photograph: Anna Gowthorpe/PA
Canon Harper explained her attitude to those who disagree with her in a piece in the Guardian in February 2012: "In Buckinghamshire, where I live, the sort of folk who feel they need protecting from women are only 3% of all churchgoers. ... the synod patched together a dirty little compromise which gave the anti-women brigade a ghetto clause [my emphasis - Ed]. If she were to look at the Anglican Communion worldwide she would find that her views are in the minority but that hinders ambition.

The suggestion that opponents to their scheming are afraid of women continues on Twitter:

This must be great fun for feminists who have no regard for the feelings of ordinary women and men whose faith rises above false claims of inequality. But do people who are taken in by these false claims fully understand the liberal agenda in which they have become pawns? Cranmer has taken Canon Harper to task for her attitude to assisted dying (here), a position which is contrary to the view of the Church. He wrote: "His Grace tweeted about this yesterday, because he found the final paragraph astonishing in its starkness and cruelty. Here is a Canon of the Established Church telling Peers of the Realm that should they oppose Lord Falconer's Bill, they are 'requiring people to suffer extreme agony', and so voting in a manner which is neither moral nor Christian."

With scant regard for synodical governance, the Ten Commandments or anything which stands in their way it was no surprise that Canon Harper was the chosen one to preach at the recent  ordinations in the Diocese of Llandaff where Barry their bishop is busy ensuring that his Governing Body is eased towards assisted dying and same-sex marriage using the same process which saw the realisation of his ambition to see women consecrated as bishops in the Church in Wales before he returns to his nonconformist roots as senior bishop in the Uniting Church in Wales.

In her Guardian piece Rosie Harper wrote "Out in the normal world, Christians around the country have voted loud and clear for female bishops. Full stop. But in the Hogwarts world of synod it feels more precarious". So what is "the normal world" today and what does it hold for the Church? In Great Britain most Anglicans are nominal Christians who have been conned into believing that scripture and tradition must reflect society, misusing 'equality' as their byword. 

In the  Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland where nearly half the church's clergy are women, so called "equality" now reigns. The majority of their pastors are more tolerant to same-sex unions than the General Synod. From the Helsinki Times: "A survey conducted by the Academic Church Professionals shows that as many as 60 per cent of pastors believe they should be able to bless the union of same-sex couples living in a registered partnership.The survey also shows that in this respect female pastors are more tolerant than their male colleagues, with nearly three in four prepared to bless the union of same-sex couples."

"Feminists of faith" are changing the Church for their own ends. In doing so they demean true women of faith and wound the Body of Christ. Where is the equality in that?  Next - Judith of Nazareth.


  1. Joseph Golightly7 July 2014 at 11:36

    Arrogant lady "Out in the normal world, Christians around the country have voted loud and clear for female bishops" Thank the Lord the Catholic Church is not run on the "democratic" (sic) lines that her church seems to adore. Since women have been ordained there has been a steep decline in church attendance which was a major reason for introducing the new order

  2. Where is this disgraceful altar adorned with the flag of the LGBT movement?
    Is there nothing in the rubrics ? But then,I now recall Bishop John adorning his altar with party balloons ,and they were all colours of the rainbow!

  3. Fascinated Outsider8 July 2014 at 12:29

    I wonder how many of your contributors read the excellent review by one of our best female priest-theologians, Angela Tilby, in the Church Times (20th June). She patently has little truck with any of this (I wonder why she has never been invited to preach at a Llandaff ordination?). With the headline "Talking About Their Pain Again" she rigorously deconstructs the sloppy thinking in yet another introspective about why women are entitled to be bishops. It begins...

    "Angela Tilby finds a set of interviews highly regrettable

    Women in Waiting: Prejudice at the heart of the Church, Julia Ogilvy, Bloomsbury £12.99

    "So here we are again, waiting for women to become true equals in the ministry of the Church. The subtitle of this collection of essays suggests that the Church of England is gripped by a hateful conspiracy to keep women in their place..."

    She ends, citing one interviewee, who claims that female clergy are not taken as seriously in the UK as in the USA. "This book" Tilby tersely concludes "is one of the reasons."

  4. "Waiting for women to become true equals in the ministry of the church? "

    Men and women are already true equals in the ministry of the church ,for we are equal in the sight of God, but in order not to lose sight of how the church was established,men and women have different roles.
    The church is a family , and in the family of the Church we see an image and reflection of the Holy Family. The priest is an icon of Christ and is represented by the male ,and to ordain a women to stand as the icon of Christ introduces confusion into our understanding of how Christianity was born and created. The icon for women is the Virgin Mary- the mother of the family, and what a honour this is to women .
    'Fascinated outsider',you are confusing in your mind the structure of the Holy Catholic Church ( to which we all profess to uphold as we recite our Creed) with social equality and 'women's rights'.
    This muddled thinking is responsible for the exitus of many from the Anglican Church.

  5. Fascinated Outsider9 July 2014 at 14:19

    I think you miss the point, Simple Soul. I was trying to illustrate that it was interesting that a leading female priest-theologian was challenging the prevailing view of those campaigning so crassly for women bishops by arguing for a more thorough understanding of history, theology and ecclesiology. As Tilby has said elsewhere of a book about how women preside at the Eucharist "There is a somewhat wearying tendency to write as though it is simply to be taken for granted that what is spon­taneous, personal, and extempore offers a vastly superior expression of the gospel than the grounded, common, and tradi­tional... There are too many writers in this col­lec­tion who seem to live in a state I can describe only as girl-church, with­out considering that the imagining of this entity could con­stitute the ultimate be­trayal of their avowed aspiration to inclusivity." This, I imagine, is why Tilby will never be one of 'Barry's Babes'?

  6. "Ranters of apostasy" would have been a more accurate title