|St Non's Holy Well, St Davids, Pembs Courtesy of TripAdvisor|
The sick, the poor and women in childbirth were mentioned when physician heal thyself would have been far more appropriate. Under a previous entry a comment was made that "the Bench is still behaving like a Medieval papacy and treating the rest of us like we don't matter". It referred to a letter to the Church Times in which it was stated: "The Church in Wales Book of Common Prayer, enacted by various canons, declares that confirmation is a rite, and its rubrics provide that confirmation is generally necessary to receive holy communion. The Church's constitution provides that alterations to rites and discipline may be made only by canon."
The bishops of the Church in Wales decided 'after receiving legal advice', perhaps from the canon lawyers sat on the bench, that the change could be implemented by pastoral letter without any authorisation by canon.
This is the latest example of how the bench of bishops in the Church in Wales are a law unto themselves. Previously clear signals have been given to the bench by church members after expensive consultations that same sex marriage in church would not be approved and that a Code of Practice should make provision for loyal members of the Church in Wales who are unable in conscience to receive the sacramental ministry of women, a matter of theology, not equality. Both were ignored. The bishops simply did as they desired.
So where does the Church in Wales go from here now that Dr Morgan has retired? The presumption is that the next archbishop will be one of the canon lawyers on the bench. While Dr Morgan has taken a great deal of stick for placing his own interpretation on scripture he has been careful to explain that his views were those of the bench making the bishops complicit.
How can the bench have any credibility in their leadership of the Church in Wales without radical changes? They can start with an act of contrition in a process of purification of themselves.