Queen Elizabeth II has appointed the Reverend Preb Paul Lockett as her personal and official Chaplain. The announcement comes as the Church of England prepares for defections in the upcoming year.
Reverend Preb Paul Lockett is a self-described traditionalist who has been outspoken about the appointment of female bishops. The Church of England is facing mass defections as it moves toward the approval of female Bishops. Lockett, however, has stated, “I can’t acknowledge a woman Bishop. If she then delegates her authority to a male Bishop, it has no value.”
Upon the announcement of Lockett as the Queen’s Royal Chaplain, he said, “It’s almost like a nod of approval by the Royal Family and Church of England…It shows that they still see the traditionalist voice as an important one that ought to be heard. I will keep speaking about my traditionalist views, and making sure they’re heard.”
He continued, “I can only say what I believe, and we need to make sure there is a code of practice and respect that fits with the authority a Bishop should have, which can be done only when the Bishop is male.”
The Church of England, which is Anglican, has recently begun the process to approve female Bishops. Reaction has been varied, with some reports showing that clergy and parishioners are preparing to leave once the proposal passes.
Pope John Paul II established the Ordinariate, a governmental structure, to allow Anglicans to retain their heritage while partaking in full communion with the Holy Catholic Church.
Monseigneur Keith Newton cautioned Church of England parishioners in an interview with The Daily Telegraph, “You can’t become a Catholic because you simply want to escape the problems of the Church of England -- you have to want to become a Catholic.”
He also stated that the number of defections depend “a little bit on what the Synod decides to do.” Estimates are currently in the hundreds for clergy and thousands for parishioners, according to reports.