|"Be joyful and keep the faith!" - The motto of Credo Cymru|
Lay and clergy members of the Church in Wales who subscribe to the traditional Anglican understanding of faith and order are being invited by Credo Cymru (Forward in Faith, Wales) to Register as members of Y Gymdeithas, a Society for Wales under the patronage of the Welsh Saints similar to The Society in the Church of England. It is hoped that the Rt Revd Jonathan Goodall, Bishop of Ebbsfleet, will serve in due course as Visitor of the Society in Wales.
This puts into practice the suggestion of the Bishop of St Asaph in September 2016 following the Conference to Preserve the Breadth of Anglicanism in Wales that such a body be established "to explore the possibility of a 'double belonging' to the society and to the diocese. Priests would continue to owe a duty of canonical obedience to the bishop with jurisdiction, who is the ordinary, but they could have an affective loyalty to an Episcopal Visitor chosen for the society."
For many it has proved difficult to 'be joyful and keep the faith'. So difficult that many have given up on finding that the church had left them, seeing no point in paying to maintain an 'inclusive' institution that excluded many cradle Anglicans.
But be that as it may. The appointment of two women bishops has placed conscientious clergy and laity in Wales in a difficult position, one from which they could see no escape. This move provides hope and a belated glimmer of understanding. Pray that it is not too little, too late.