Sunday, 2 December 2007

ABp Jensen on women bishops: 4-3 majority is "a shaky start to an innovation"

See also my post here GRASed Up: the betrayal of a commitment.

[...] Within the Anglican Church of Australia we now have the situation that in some dioceses there may be women bishops. You know that I am opposed to this innovation on scriptural grounds, believing as I do in the equality of men and women in Christ, but our complementarity in church and home. I believe that the way that God has ordered our relationships is demonstrably for the best.

I am disappointed about the way in which this innovation came into existence, through the Appellate Tribunal of our Church, rather than the Synod. The nature of the ministry is a key point of fellowship between Christians. A change of this significance should have been the consequence of mutual agreement in General Synod rather than legal fiat.

The fact that two-thirds of the Synod was needed to pass such legislation is a proper indication of the seriousness with which a novelty such as this should be viewed. It is a high, but not impossible bar. I am aware that many were frustrated by the fact that the numbers were never enough in the General Synod and almost certainly would not have been enough this time. But that is the nature of the rules of fellowship. A legal decision resting on a 4-3 majority is scarcely a sound basis for a change of this magnitude. It is a shaky start to an innovation. Read more
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