Only 10 days after rejecting a proposal to accept female bishops, the Church of England has already started taking steps toward a new initiative at its governing General Synod to get the issue up for another vote.
A 19-member archbishops' council said that a meeting next month will "put in place a clear process for discussions in the new year with a view to bringing legislative proposals before the Synod in July."
Bishops have described the issue "as a matter of urgency," and U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron has urged the church to "get on with it" after expressing his disappointment at the failed vote on Nov. 20. Cameron has said that the church should resolve the matter on its own, but The Associated Press noted that some lawmakers have suggested that they might abolish the Church of England's exemption status if it is deemed guilty of gender discrimination. more >>
New York Archbishop Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan has moved forward in his push to canonize Dorothy Day, described by many as a Catholic liberal hero, as the Roman Catholic Church celebrated the anniversary of her birth and death.
Day, born Nov. 8, 1897, was an American social activist, journalist and devout Roman Catholic who dedicated her life to fighting for the poor and homeless. She died on Nov. 29, 1980.
"I am convinced she is a saint for our time," Cardinal Dolan said at this month's United States Conference of Catholic Bishops meeting, where members voted unanimously to move forward with her canonization cause. Dolan said that Day exemplifies "what's best in Catholic life, that ability we have to be 'both-and' not 'either-or.'" more >>
An official with a diocese that recently voted to leave The Episcopal Church has explained that congregations opposed to the decision are free to remain with the mainline protestant denomination.
The Rev. Jim Lewis, Canon to the Ordinary for the Diocese of South Carolina, told The Christian Post that "Continuing Episcopalians" are free to "re-associate" with the denomination.
"Churches wishing to leave the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina and re-associate with the Episcopal Church are free to do so, in accordance with their own bylaws and articles of incorporation," said Lewis. more >>
The Rev. Justin Welby, the next spiritual leader of the worldwide Anglican Communion, has said that the Church of England will soon have women bishops, despite losing in a crucial vote on Tuesday in the General Synod.
"It's clear those women are going to be bishops in the Church of England," said Welby, who is set to take over from Rowan Williams in March 2013 as Archbishop of Canterbury.
"It was a pretty grim day for the whole church. There is a lot to be done but I am absolutely confident that at some point I will consecrate a woman bishop," Welby said during a visit to Nigeria, where he was promoting peace among the world's largest mixed Christian-Muslim population, Reuters reported. more >>
A day after the Church of England failed to come to a two-third majority vote to pave the way for women bishops, its spiritual head, the Most Rev. Rowan Williams, has suggested that the Anglican church has lost credibility and is "blind" to the trends of society.
"Whatever the motivation for voting yesterday, whatever the theological principle on which people acted and spoke, the fact remains that a great deal of this discussion is not intelligible to our wider society," Williams began.
"Worse than that, it seems as if we are willfully blind to some of the trends and priorities of that wider society," he continued. "We have as a result of yesterday undoubtedly lost a measure of credibility in our society." more >>
The Church of England has voted to block a proposal seeking to allow women to serve as bishops after a day-long debate on Tuesday at its General Synod.
The two-thirds majority needed to pass the legislation was narrowly missed, meaning that women will not be able to join the highest echelons of the clergy. According to church officials, it will likely be a minimum of five years before a new vote on the issue can be put on the table.
The vote in the House of Laity came down to 132 in favor of women bishops to 74 against, The Associated Press reported. In a separate vote, bishops voted 44 in favor and 3 against, while the rest of the clergy voted 148 in favor verses 45 against – so although most Anglican officials were in favor of the proposal, the crucial two-thirds majority was not met, falling short at 64 percent, or only six votes. more >>