Saturday, June 26, 2010

Anglican Bloodbath?

No, this isn't a post about Queen Elizabeth. As with most of our Anglican-based posts, it's about Rowan's continued problems, though the ideas of "Rowan" and "bloodbath" don't really go together. More like "Rowan" and "catastrophic collapse."

As reported by the Daily Mail, Rowan is trying to hold the remaining timbers of the Anglican wreck together. That's to be expected, I guess. We all try to keep our job security, and I suppose if the Archlayman of Canterbury has any duty at all, it would be to keep some sort of Anglican entity in existence as best he could.

As is often the case, the issue at hand has to do with bishops (such as they are in Canterbury), specifically women who want to be bishops.

The Archbishops of Canterbury and York are to make a dramatic intervention in the long-running row over women bishops this week by demanding that opponents of female clergy are not driven out of the Church.

Dr Rowan Williams and Dr John Sentamu are so concerned thousands of traditionalist churchgoers will quit when women become bishops that they are to risk the wrath of liberals by calling for major reforms in Church legislation.

Ok, so you've got a threatened schism over women becoming bishops. What do you do if you're the leader here? Do you make a stand on principle? Take the bull by the horns and formally declare for one side or the other on a dispute that strikes at the very heart of what the episcopacy is? Attempt to formulate some sort of doctrine or instruction on the matter through debate, study, and discourse?

Of course not. This is Rowan we're talking about here. What you do is abandon all semblance of reason and try to please everyone, ironically enough by deliberately splitting the Anglican Communion from within and asking that people just keep the brand name intact.

Sources said their statement will spell out a legal formula that will give traditionalist clergy and parishes the right to reject the authority of a woman bishop.

Traditionalists, who do not accept that women can be priests or bishops, have been calling for the creation of a ‘his and hers’ Church, in which they cannot be forced to serve under a woman bishop.

Liberals say, however, this would unacceptably diminish the status of women bishops because there would be parts of the Church over which they would have no sway.

So far the Synod has only agreed to give traditionalists minimal protection in the form of a code of conduct.

Holy smokes. Did the "traditionalists" just admit that the women bishops aren't really bishops? If you're going to pretend to be bishops at all, shouldn't you at least agree on whether or not your own folks are consecrated as such? How can you have a real bishop and not have to serve under them?

The liberals are right. Either the women have the authority as bishops or they don't. The proposed de facto schism under the umbrella of the Anglican Communion would be completely nonsensical. Then again, nonsense has been the Anglican stock in trade for a while now. Rowan and John aren't even dealing with logic anymore and are just scraping to save the brand.

An insider said: ‘This is a huge moment for the Church. It will determine the shape of things to come. The Archbishops are putting their integrity on the line, but are passionate about keeping the Church together.’

Shouldn't you have some integrity first before you can put it on the line? Unfortunately, Rowan sacrificed that a long time ago. All of this grab-bagging is embarrassing. There is no "Church" left in Canterbury to keep together.

However, a leading supporter of female clergy said: ‘There is a good chance the Synod will reject the Archbishops.’

We needed an "insider" for that tidbit?

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