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Saturday, 6 December 2014

Just about Eve

Creation of Eve, Sistine Chapel ceiling                                                                          Michelangelo

At its meeting on 4 December the Dioceses Commission unanimously agreed with a proposal received from the Archbishop of Canterbury to fill the vacant see of Maidstone. The see, which had been vacant since 2009, had been identified by the Archbishop as one that should be filled by a bishop who takes a conservative evangelical view on headship. - CofE News Release; see also Ruth Gledhill on 'headship' bishop here.

One small step after the Church Society had called for the appointment of 12 Conservative Evangelical Bishops given the proportion of worshippers attending evangelical parishes in the Church of England.

A report in The Economist in 2012 claimed "The rise of evangelicalism is shaking up the established church". But not proportionately according to these figures:

"As the number of people who are actively committed to the Church of England falls, the proportion of churchgoers who are serious about their faith—and its implications for private and public life—is growing. Peter Brierley, a collector of statistics on faith in Britain, reckons that 40% of Anglicans attend evangelical parishes these days, up from 26% in 1989. That is against a background of overall decline; he thinks the number of regular worshippers in the Church of England will have fallen to 680,000 by 2020, down from about 800,000 now and just under 1m a decade ago. The lukewarm are falling away, leaving the pews to the more fervent."

Given the calls for so-called equality in the Church one would have thought that an established movement based on scripture and reason would take priority over a religious novelty based on feminism and relativism. But not so. The feminist movement has seen its rise to dominance in a steady progression through the deaconate to the priesthood and now the episcopacy while a sizable chunk of the Anglican Church is left marginalised and largely ignored.

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, predicted that in 10 years, half the Church of England’s bishops might be women. "Ten to 15 years would be reasonable. It depends when people retire," he said after the vote. Abp Welby said the church was working to train women as potential bishops. "The aim is that you end up with a big pool of people where gender is irrelevant. We are going to take this very, very seriously." - Working to train women as potential bishops, then fast-tracked into the House of Lords. Seriously indeed - but only on terms acceptable to the ruling liberal elite!

Gender may be irrelevant in the new Church of England. So too it seems is belief when 40% of Anglicans are not properly represented. But it is not really about equality. It is just about Eve.


  1. Eve came from Adam's rib. So--------!!!!!

  2. Fascinated Outsider7 December 2014 at 19:48

    Do the feminist lobby in the Church of England realise what a humiliating climb-down they've had to perform to get the legislation passed to allow the ordination of women to the episcopate? Their bull-dozing, arrogant and, frankly, graceless attempts to pursue a one-clause measure (a la Wigley and Peggy the Pilot) was thrown out in November 2012 because the majority imposing their will on a minority was considered unacceptable by the General Synod. We then suffered all the hand-wringingly wet reactions and the witch-hunts against those who dared to vote against the bad measure; but it forced all sides back to the table. The C of E now has a workable solution, in which liberals and traditionalists actually have some trust in the integrity of episcopal orders. Those in favour of the ordination of women had to recognise that the acceptance of diversity can never mean having the church exclusively on 'my' terms. This could never happen in Wales, of course, because (a) the GB has been reduced - literally - to a bunch of Barry Morgan's stooges who will rubber stamp anything he wants; and (b) because Barry Morgan, unlike the Archbishop of Canterbury, has absolutely no capacity, or desire, to be a reconciling focus of unity. For him, it's all about 'my terms' every step of the way.

    1. After two or more decades of pushing the ordination of women through the Church in Wales none of the current bishops has the courage of their convictions and has offered to retire to enable the appointment of the first woman bishop. I suspect that they are all talk and no action, and probably do not wish to serve with a woman on the Bench. NIMBYs !!!

    2. Kenny Carruthers8 December 2014 at 06:56

      Four out of the six Bench sitters have compromised their previously held views when it became expedient to do so to get preferment. Three of them have said at various times that, unlike in England, there isn’t the talent amongst the women clergy in the Church in Wales from which an appointment to the Bench could be made. So all that damage and mistrust and loss of our people to other denominations has been caused for nothing more than an ego trip in diversity and equality management. Hardly the advancement of the Kingdom.

  3. Llandaff Pelican8 December 2014 at 12:32

    Byzantine Barry's record endorses precisely everything Kenny Carruthers has said. On several occasions he had the opportunity to appoint a woman from within the Church in Wales to a senior appointment in Llandaff, but decisively chose not to. He imported Peggy the Pilot (after she applied for more archdeaconries in England than we've ever heard of without being appointed - but obviously didn't get the message) to be Archdeacon of Llandaff. He needed a Dean to replace Napoleon, and imported Janet Henderson. What a good move that proved to be, because she saw through the sham pretty quickly, walked away, and is now taking him to the cleaners (at what cost to the C in W?). After Janet's departure, he had another chance to appoint a woman from within Wales, but instead decided to burden the Golf Caddy with far more than he is capable of handling. The Ass Bishop came from the C of E's preferment reject list. And, in between the two stints performed by the Gold Caddy, we had Australia's answer to Mr Slope who (we are reliably informed) had been applying for jobs across the C of E but was not appointed because in every case 'something' seemed to be not quite right.

    Of course, we know why there is a dearth of good quality female clergy in Wales - and it all points back to Byzantine Barry himself. Both in Bangor and Llandaff, he has thrown all his support behind fifty-something year old divorcees, primary school teachers taking early retirement, social workers escaping the rat race and seeking 'spirituality' who found themselves in the depths of Snowdonia with time on their hands, and an assortment of others. They were given scant training on courses run by Sour Sue from Bangor and other half wits, and were let loose on an unsuspecting church with no theology, no ecclesial instinct, no sense of how to speak confidently in the public square.

    Those rare examples of female clergy who have trained professionally know what they are dealing with, of course; and I dare say there has been at least one two-fingered salute to Llys Esgob from the Diocese of St Asaph!

    1. Kenny Carruthers8 December 2014 at 13:42

      @Llandaff Pelican – to add to your ‘state of the nation’ appraisal there is also the realisation that the ‘long game’ played by Byzantine Barry has been to run down and destroy the Church in Wales. In fact division, decline and destruction have been the hallmarks of his ministry – all in all a ‘delta, delta, delta minus’ performance, but one that the Devil would regard as ‘alpha plus’. ‘You will know them by their fruits.’

  4. Beleaguered of Bangor8 December 2014 at 12:43

    The Bench-Sitter who began the trend of compromising his previously firmly held convictions, of course, was Carlos the Fornicator. Sitting in his rectory in Dolgellau, he saw the blinding light, had a vision of episcopal bling, and heard a voice (with a strong Neath accent) telling him that he could only become a puppet and a poodle if he changed his mind and converted to the new orthodoxy. Perhaps he realised that the 'Benefits in Kind' were advantageous, too.

  5. But what about real, genuine faith in God? What about the saving power of Jesus for any and everyone, if allowed? If the CiW doesn't embrace evangelicalism, it won't last beyond the current generation - it will, quite literally, die! But God loves his Church, and promised that he would build it, and the gates of hell would not prevail against. The question is, therefore, is God still in the CiW, or has he found a better option?