Church of England

The Cuurch of England has voted against consecrating women Bishops. Interestingly the Bishops and Clergy voted for only the House of Laity voted against. So many Anglicans are moving closer to full communion with the Roman Catholic Church. Consecration of women Bishops would make unity impossible.

Frankly, I am surprised. Pleasantly; one takes what good news one can find.


I don’t care if they “consecrate” women, they are just Protestants playing dress-up. But wouldn’t the Anglican laity rather be more motivated to enter in communion with the Catholic Church when they see their church leaders going so obviously against 2000 years of Christian tradition and teaching?

You note it was the laity that prevented women bishops

This is some amazing news.

Really? Wow. I read an article on the subject just this morning that said the measure was expected to pass easily. Of course, the reporter didn’t say who expected it to pass easily.

Some people are already pointing out essentially that Anglicans do not have valid holy orders anyway, but I still think this is significant in several ways. It prevents the Catholic Church from being just slightly more alone in its position on gender roles, for one thing. It also prevents yet another tremendous hurdle from being set up in ecumenical dialogue. The less far the Church of England goes in abandoning Apostolic Christianity, the less far future generations of Anglicans will have to go to return, if they so choose.

Unexpected news is unexpected.

This is interesting, In The Anglican Church of South Africa a woman has just been elected bishop.

You may not care at all. It matters a great deal to the leaders of your church, however.

According to a tweet from Ruth Gledhill of the Times, “Rome wants #synod to just say ‘yes’ to women bishops cos they will then know where they stand, says source. They don’t want more agony”.

Now that the synod has said “no”, but in barely, will they be back with the same resolution next time? The measure got sizable majorities in the bishops, the clergy, but not the 2/3 needed in the laity.

Are the laity telling us something? I don’t think so, but maybe.

Calling Anglicans laity playing dress up is remarkably uncharitable and not at all the example set by Pope Benedict who has a warm personal friendship with the present Archbishop of Canterbury.

It feels like nowadays everything is determined by popular opinion. I wonder if God lets us “vote” in Heaven, :smiley:

I doubt it. but somehow I think it might go over well in the other place…:smiley:

Well, agreed, if they sincerely believe they have valid orders. But how much more uncharitable is it to leave them in that illusion?

What I meant to suggest was that Anglicans converting to Catholicism usually do so because they are dissatisfied with what is going on in their church, such as changes to the liturgy and the ordination of women and non-celibate openly homosexual men to the priesthood. Add women bishops to that, and I suspect many more will seek to return to Rome.

Ultimately, it takes more than being dissatisfied with your own community to rightly decide to be Catholic. One should also, indeed primarily, be joining the Catholic Church because one believes that it and it alone is the true Church and possesses the fullness of the means of salvation God has made available to us. Anglican priests or bishops joining the new ordinariates that I’ve heard speak have essentially acknowledged this and sought to contradict the narrative that they are just “disaffected Anglicans.”

No more uncharitable than it is of them to refrain from questioning your beliefs about your religion. There are far more un-catechicized Catholics in the world than there are Anglicans. I suggest you start your charity there.

Surprisingly, we all know where each other stands, by and large. I’m Anglican, and I know the Roman position on Anglican orders better than most Catholics. I grew weary worrying about it. So, now, whenever I hear Apostolicae Curae mentioned, I just take a deep breath and reach for a good Latin prayer book. No use arguing facts when the other side is arguing from faith.

Yes, of course, ultimately they should be convinced of the Catholic faith. But I have often read in interviews and testimonies from former Anglicans that this or that change in the Anglican church moved them to investigate the Catholic faith. Suppose that the Anglican church was virtually unchanged from the days of Henry VIII, then many I would assume find little incentive to investigate the Catholic Church. Don’t you agree?

We may not accept as Catholics the Apostolic succession of Anglican Bishops, but there is no need to talk about them so disrespectfully.

Actually the Anglicanism has improved in some ways since the days of Henry VIII. Though the monarch remains head of the Church of England (and this is still an extremely bad problem in my judgement, as it ultimately affirms the theoretical authority of the State over the Church) he (or she, as it stands currently) does not wield practical power over it anymore (actually I have an inkling things would be much less “liberal” if she did, but it could easily have been the reverse). Also monasticism and other forms of religious life are generally respected again, and there are even Anglican Benedictines and Franciscans. And in any case they aren’t executing Catholics left and right anymore.

But even if this were not so, I don’t think we should wish the worst upon non-Catholic groups in the hopes that horrible doctrines and practices will force people of good will to re-examine themselves. There will always be enough in any non-Catholic group, especially if it only separated less than five hundred years ago, to cause any well-informed Christians of good will to question its legitimacy, or so is the opinion of this convert. But they usually will not be Christians of good will if their initial faith formation is horrible. I think we should hope for greater goodness and orthodoxy in non-Catholic Churches, not less. These things can only lead a person towards the fullness of truth, while error can only lead them away from it.

I take a very slightly different approach.


As always, and as the result of more careful deliberation. Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanks and the same to you and yours.


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