Parliament Will Force C of E

If this article is correct, the British parliament will demand that the Church of England vote again on women bishops, and this time approve the measure. This could provoke a very major crisis in the Church of England.

If parliament forces them to contravene their rules and vote again what happens if the members of the General Synod resent the move and even more vote against the measure simply as a way to tell parliament to get lost? I thought this spat was going to be limited to the Church of England only, but if parliament interferes we could see a major crisis for the established church.

Even more intriguing, what if the Queen were to get involved? I wonder if she would be in favor of women bishops? Her own faith is thought to be low church C of E–a simple, Bible based  traditional sort of religion. It was rumored that she was opposed to women’s ordination to the priesthood. It could get really interesting if she got involved.

I think we’re seeing history being made.

  • Zwetschgenkrampus

    Now, if that article were indeed correct, that would REALLY be democracy for you – to have one vote after another, until you get the desired result. Uh-huh.

    Now, please explain, why the CofE DOES need a General Synod.

  • Pax

    Tangential question: do female Anglican priests use the title “Father”? I’ve heard some priests in the Anglican Communion use “Father” in the same way that Catholics do. Obviously, “Reverend” is an option for a formal title as it is with Catholics, but is there some more informal equivalent to “Father” for female priests?

  • Benjamin Vallejo Jr

    The Queen never did make her opinion of female clergy public but she did send a message through her spokespersons to CoE traditionalists. That was the proof of the pudding!

  • David N

    She’ll have no choice but to agree unless she wants to spark a constitutional crisis. It’s what you get when you hand over spiritual matters to temporal authority. Henry VIII’s legacy lives on. Politicians acting as the ultimate arbiter on matters of faith and morals? No thank you.

  • Pat

    Anyone catch this quote from Tony Baldry?
    “If the Church of England wants to be a national church, then it has to reflect the values of the nation.”
    Therein lies the whole problem, I think.

  • http://jandyongenesis.blogspot.com Alice C. Linsley

    Yes, this is the stuff that makes it into church history books, but the secular books used in the public schools won’t mention a word. My son teaches Humanities in a public school. One of the painters the students learn about is El Greco. I read that section, being a fan of El Greco’s work, and was stunned by the flatness of the presentation. There is not a single reference to the Counter Reformation.

    My friends in the UK think that Parliament will not intervene. Lots of pressure on certain people to do so, but most recognize the dangers of government intervention. Parliament refused to have a say on the new Archbishop of Canterbury. If it now gets involved due to pressure from some Anglicans, it will raise embarrassing questions.

  • Anil Wang

    Of course that forced “keep voting until you get it right” tactic will likely backfire.

    There are many low church Calvinists who might vote in favour of “women bishops” (since Lutherans, Methodists, and Presbyterians think its okay) but are strongly against parliament bullying the C of E into accepting its will. If a forced revote is held, it may end up with a majority of laity voting against “women bishops” on principle instead of their current vote which indicates that “women bishops” will happen in the next synod.

  • Tom in South Jersey

    Reminds me of certain EU votes where the governments would insist on voting over again until the correct result was obtained.

    • Will

      Or the US election of 2000, where the Democrat stance was “keep counting until we win.”

  • Matthew the Wayfarer

    The Queen won’t get involved at her age. She will simply remain quiet and keep all female clergy out of her domain if she is against them or welcome them silently if it doesn’t matter to her. She has no real power anyway. I read once that Queen Elizabeth 1 only allowed the Worship to be in Latin in her Chapel. Quite a difference, eh?

  • Charles E. Mac Kay

    I am not really interested. Whatever happens it serves them right.

    • Don Pedro

      Boy it’s more than that Charles. I was reading headlines earlier today about president Obama saying we should be thankful but not who we should thank (for the fourth year in a row) and how he said that thanksgiving is time to stand behind the government and the country. Maybe it is subtle but our government limits more and more what our charities can do, thereby making it mandatory to tax more so the they can then provide our every need. Our government (Obama in particular but really our government in general) does not want us to look to God in times of need but to them, and, I realize this is a stretch but, doesn’t that eventually end up looking like the failed communists and socialist governments? What is happening there can happen here.

  • Richard

    I like this from one of the comments in the article you linked:

    The Church in England was founded in 597.

    The Church of England was founded in 1559.

    Not the same thing. The first has priests, the second social workers.

  • Lynda

    It simply shows that CoE is not the Church instituted by Christ and lead by the Holy Spirit but a purely human organisation under the aegis of the State.

    • flyingvic

      No, it simply shows that that is the opinion of some people who don’t really know what they’re talking about.

      • Luke

        Wow excellent retort vic. You really showed her.

        • Bernard

          How rediculous, anyone with half a brain knows that the Cof E of 597 is not the same C of E in 1559 or now, our present time.

  • FW Ken

    The first has priests, the second social workers.

    Not so: the first has priests, the second ministers.

    Which is to say this: for 25 years I have been Catholic, for 16 years before that an Episcopalian. Those 16 years were good times, when God met me and drew me to Himself through the ministry of Episcopalian clergy and lay folk. Not all grace is sacramental grace, or rather, God’s grace is not limited to the seven sacraments. We can look at the sacramentals , but also the grace of kind, Christian souls who demonstrate authentic caritas. – You will know they are my disciples by the love you have for one another. We can see grace in the prayers of the faithful who invoke the Name of Jesus, even outside of the Catholic Church – those not against us are for us. There is grace in the decent, orderly worship of the Book of Common Prayer and Hymnal 1982.

    Generally speaking, I tend to find grace everywhere because of the grace in the Sacraments, not grace in the Sacraments and, therefore, not elsewhere. Even if the Anglican communities are not churches in the same sense as Catholic and Orthodox Churches, Anglican communities are not nothing. Far from it. They are our separated brethren, many of them much more faithful to the light they see than I am to the Catholic light. Their communities do much in this world to spread the Gospel.

  • Robert

    This reminds me of the clash between church and state in the 1928 Prayer Book controversy. Some parliamentarians may be concerned about wheter the Church of England, which is subject to the Human Rights Act, would be violating European law by refusing to ordain a woman bishop. Could someone bring this matter before the European Court of Human Rights? Constitutionally speaking, couldn’t Parliament abolish the General Synod and take back its prerogative to legislate for the CofE? If the new ABC is faced with a bullying Parliament, it will be a test of his mettle, whether he believes in the independence of the Church or sees himself as just another politician in the Establishment. St Thomas More, ora pro nobis.

  • http://platytera.blogspot.com/ kkollwitz

    Surprised that no-one has typed “Erastianism” into the combox yet.


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