Trans-gender individuals being re-baptised or blessed in the Anglican church


I’m not sure if this discussion is in the right location, so apologies if so.

I am wondering how those who consider themselves Anglo-Catholic are able to justify staying in the Anglican church if this goes ahead? Those Anglicans that belong to The Society of St. Wilfred and St. Hilda for example?


You want the master Anglo-Catholic, @HopkinsReb


I’ll be watching.


Are they acting like the person before the transformation is someone different so the prior baptism doesn’t apply?


Where is this occurring?

The Anglican church is not globally unified like the Catholic church is; it’s more like the Orthodox churches in structure. I’m not under the authority of the Archbishop of Canterbury; he’s basically symbolic.

Anglicans will likely respond like we did to Bishop Gene Robinson: forming or joining continuing Anglican communions.


My understanding from UK papers in this would be England and The Society is English. If not the Archbishop of Canterbury who is the person in authority?


The bishops.

The Archbishop of Canterbury is a symbolic head. He’s not the Anglican Pope.


The Archbishop of Canterbury is the senior bishop and principal leader of the Church of England, the symbolic head of the worldwide Anglican Communion and the diocesan bishop of the Diocese of Canterbury. The current archbishop is Justin Welby, who was enthroned at Canterbury Cathedral on 21 March 2013.

That’s what Wikipedia says


The Anglican Communion is essentially a federation of national and regional Anglican churches (called “provinces”). You should think of it in terms of the United Nations. The US and Russia are both members of the UN, but they are completely different countries with their own laws and rules.

In terms of the Church of England, yes, the Archbishop is the “Primate of All England.” However, his authority outside of the Province and Diocese of Canterbury is limited. He’s not like the Pope. CofE bishops have a lot of influence within their dioceses.

Plus, Canterbury is not the only Archbishop in England. The Archbishop of York is primate of the province of York (in northern England). So, outside of the province of Canterbury (in southern England) the Archbishop of Canterbury’s powers are even more limited.

The ultimate authority in the Church of England that all bishops are ultimately answerable to is the General Synod. This is a representative body made up of bishops, lower clergy, and lay deputies. They make the Church of England’s rules.


Although, of course, the Queen is the Supreme Governor of the CoE, which means that some General Synod decisions, admittedly not much nowadays, must be approved by parliament. Back in the 1920s the Church decided to introduce a new Prayer Book, but parliament vetoed it. Government ministers also have a role in the appointment of bishops, although they tend not to interfere too much


There you go.


So if the General Synod votes to perform transgender re-baptisms then it is accepted by all the bishops?


Of course not. You will always have bishops who object, but they could be forced out if they violate such a rule.

However, to my knowledge, this re-baptism is not anything that has been adopted church-wide. It’s probably just something done on a local basis that is being allowed by particular bishops. I could be wrong though.


True. I believe today the way it works is that when there is a vacancy some church committee recommends a candidate and that candidate is always chosen by the government.


So by objecting to innovation that can be removed from ministry?


Who would do the “forcing out” exactly if there is no authority above them in the hierarchy?


The Church of England has a system of church courts that handle disciplinary cases. If a bishop is violating church law, there is still a disciplinary process. And both the Archbishops of Canterbury and York probably do have some powers to discipline bishops, but it’s probably nowhere as extensive as the Pope has.


Yeah, if the General Synod wanted to go that far. In reality, what they’d probably do is make exceptions for those who were opposed.


Do Anglo-Catholics accept women bishops now?


Depends on which Anglo-Catholics you are thinking of. As with most all things in the Anglican zoo, it varies. Remember: Anglicanism = Motley.

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