Tuesday, January 09, 2007

a glimmer of hope in dark times

Those Anglicans who hold to the catholic teaching about apostolic order have had their consciences defended by the Panel of Reference appointed by the Archbishop of Canterbury. Read the Panel's report on the Diocese of Fort Worth (which does not accept the ministry of ordained women) here. Know ye: its a pdf file. Read Fort Worth's response here. And here is an article in the Living Church. ++++++Jefforts-Schori has issued her own response, to which +Iker refers in the Living Church article; but I have not been able to find it online. The Panel's report is not legally binding (very few things in Anglicanism are legally binding at the global Communion level). But it carries a great deal of moral authority, and is something of a vindication of the integrity within Anglicanism of the Church's universal teaching about the ordained ministry. It is absolutely unconscionable and appalling to me that the integrity of the Church's universal teaching on this (and many other issues) actually needs to be defended from the power of ECUSA. But it illustrates very clearly that ECUSA is hostile to the historic faith.

Highlights of the Panel's report include:

...while the Communion is in a process of reception, no diocese or parish should be compelled to accept the ministry of word or sacrament from an ordained woman; and that provision has to be made to meet the conscientious objection to ministry by women.

....

The Panel recommends that it be made clear that it is legitimate for a diocese to ask of candidates for election as bishop that they abide by the particular policy of the diocese in relation to the ministry of women, and that theological views on the ordination or consecration of women should not be a ground on which consent might be withheld by the Province/House of Bishops.

....

The Panel also recommends that the Archbishop of Canterbury continue discussions with the Diocese of Fort Worth and with the Episcopal Church with the aim of securing the place of Fort Worth in the Communion.

This is all good news for folks (like your friends at Whitehall) who defend the catholic faith with regard to the all male priesthood.

1 comment:

father thorpus said...

It seems to me that Bishop Iker is correct in assessing this report as essentially toothless, but with lots of 'moral high ground.' I'd love to see how the militant feminists take this. Of particular concern was the sentence Bp. Iker noted, "no diocese or parish should be compelled to accept the ministry of word or sacrament from an ordained woman" and its possible application to PB Schori. On the one hand, the report expects all provincial canons to be binding; on the other, it opens up space for conscientious rejection of PB Schori's leadership on grounds of sex. Does this mean Fort Worth could disallow PB Schori from presiding at the consecration of their next bishop? Who, then, would do that, and upon what grounds?

interesting stuff.