All Saints, Cheltenham: Report of the Independent Reviewer

Aug 10, 2015 by

As part of the settlement by which the Church of England agreed to the ordination of women as bishops in 2014, it agreed to an ombudsman-style procedure by which those with concerns about the operation of the new arrangements could appeal to an Independent Reviewer. In October last year the Archbishops of Canterbury and York appointed Sir Philip Mawer as the Independent Reviewer in relation to resolving disputes arising from the operation of the House of Bishops’ Declaration. Sir Philip’s report on All Saints, Cheltenham is published today. From Forward in Faith: Forward in Faith is grateful for Sir Philip Mawer’s report (available here).   Forward in Faith submitted this concern in order to establish a principle that is of general relevance to resolution parishes in multi-parish benefices. Sir Philip’s general recommendation (para. 37) that, in multi-parish team benefices that include a resolution parish, licences issued to female assistant clergy (other than members of the Team) should specify the nature and extent of the ministry they are authorized to undertake in the resolution parish establishes the principle that we thought it important to secure.   We trust that implementation of Sir Philip’s specific recommendation (para. 35) that fresh licences be issued in this case will draw a line under the matter. We join Sir Philip in hoping that the arrival of Bishop Rachel Treweek as the new diocesan bishop will provide an opportunity for all concerned to make a fresh start. Read here Read also:  After Chrism Masses, Benefice Appointments – CofE Independent Reviewer’s Second Report by David Pocklington, Law & Religion UK  ...

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Independent report: Chrism Masses and Women Bishops

Jul 31, 2015 by

From Forward in Faith: The Independent Reviewer, Sir Philip Mawer, has published his first report, in response to a complaint by WATCH (Women and the Church) against the bishops of The Society for celebrating Chrism Masses. The complaint was not upheld. Sir Philip’s report is available here. The Bishop of Wakefield (Chairman of the Council of Bishops of The Society) has welcomed Sir Philip’s report. His statement is published here. Read here...

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FiF-UK rejects claims it backs gay marriage

Jun 2, 2015 by

By George  Conger, Anglican Ink: Forward in Faith UK has not dropped its opposition to same-sex marriage, the Director of the Anglo-Catholic group tells Anglican Ink. On 2 June 2015 Dr. Colin Podmore said there was no truth in claims that in the forthcoming issue of “New Directions” the organization would announce that it was looking anew at the controversial issue. Last week a message posted on the Facebook of the gay church pressure group Changing Attitude said FiFUK would shortly announce its support for gay blessings. The post submitted by Keith Rogers stated the editor of New Directions, the Bishop of Fulham, the Rt. Rev. Jonathan Baker, (pictured) had changed his mind about gay blessings and had written an editorial now supporting the innovation. Bishop Baker could not be reached for comment as he is away on holiday until 9 June 2015. However last October’s contretemps over the bishop’s announcement that he would remarry after divorcing his wife a woman who also had been divorced and whose first husband, a priest, was still living, led some to accept the veracity of the Changing Attitude Facebook claim. His endorsement of the Pilling Report which urged a change in the church’s teaching on human sexuality also divided traditional Anglo-Catholics. Read here  ...

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The Ordination of the Bishop of Burnley

Feb 4, 2015 by

From Forward in Faith: Forward in Faith expresses its gratitude to the Archbishop of York for making arrangements for the Bishop of Burnley’s ordination which gave full expression to the Guiding Principles enshrined in the House of Bishops’ Declaration. The first Guiding Principle speaks of the respect and canonical obedience that lawful office-holders deserve. The Archbishop of York presided in York Minister and the Bishop of Burnley took the oath of due obedience to him. No one present could have been in any doubt as to the Archbishop’s metropolitical authority or the respect in which he is held. The fourth and fifth Guiding Principles embody commitments to enabling those who, for theological reasons, are unable to receive the ministry of women bishops or priests to flourish, and to making sacramental and pastoral provision for us ‘in a way that maintains the highest possible degree of communion and contributes to mutual flourishing’. The reference to a ‘degree of communion’ recognizes that full communion cannot exist where some bishops and priests are unable to receive the sacramental ministry of others. For over twenty years traditional catholic priests have been granted ordination by bishops with whom they enjoy full communion (because they can receive the ministry of all the priests whom those bishops ordain). The ordination of women as bishops gives rise to a need for similar provision for ordination to the episcopate. Such arrangements contribute to enabling our priests and bishops to flourish, allowing them to experience at the moment of ordination the full communion with the ordaining bishops that all other ordinands enjoy. We are grateful that the service in York Minster was nevertheless characterized by a very high degree of communion and fellowship, expressed not least in the fact that all could receive communion together. The arrangements determined by the Archbishop of York also contributed to ‘mutual flourishing’. We trust that no one imagines that the flourishing of traditional catholic ordinands could involve their being ordained by bishops whose sacramental ministry they cannot receive. If all the male bishops present had participated in the laying on of hands, the Bishop of Stockport (whose gracious presence we acknowledge with gratitude) would therefore have been alone in having to refrain from doing so. It would be difficult to see that as an expression of ‘mutual flourishing’. Plainly, a future female Archbishop of York could not be the principal consecrator of a traditional catholic bishop. By delegating that ministry to the Bishop of Chichester, Archbishop Sentamu has ensured that there need be no difference between his role on this occasion and that of a future female archbishop. We hope that those who support the ordination of women as bishops will agree with us that any such distinction should be avoided.  Read here Read also:  This shows there’s a future for us, says new traditionalist Bishop by Madeleine Davies, Church Times...

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Forward in Faith looks to the future

Nov 22, 2014 by

From Church Times: THERE was talk of “going forward with confidence” at this year’s National Assembly of the traditionalist organisation Forward in Faith (FiF). It was held last Saturday in St Alban’s, Holborn, in London, on the eve of the legalisation of women bishops in the Church of England. A motion carried by the Assembly thanked the Catholic Group in the General Synod and those who had served in the facilitated conversations and on the steering committee for achieving the provision for traditionalists. Introducing the motion on behalf of the Council of Forward in Faith, the Revd Edward Martin told the gathering of local representatives: “We have the sacraments; we have the scriptures; we have the teachings and the traditions of the Church. We have everything we need. We have now been given the posssibility of flourishing. What will we make of this opportunity?” The Assembly mass on Saturday morning was concelebrated by the Bishop of Edmonton, the Rt Revd Peter Wheatley, with nine episcopal concelebrants. In his sermon, the Revd Philip North, Bishop-designate of Burnley, said: “For far too long we have felt ourselves to be powerless victims of the decisions of others, slaves to the electronic voting machines of the General Synod. Today, on paper, we have the means to regain some control: a Bishops’ Declaration; a Society; the five principles that assure us that we remain within the spectrum of the teaching and tradition of the Anglican Communion.” In his address as the outgoing chairman, the Bishop of Fulham, the Rt Revd Jonathan Baker, said that the principal achievement of FiF in the past four years had been “the defeat of bad legislation”, and the bringing to birth of arrangements that offered many possibilities for the future. FiF had been “prophetic”, he said. “Had you told me [in 2012] that the doctrine of Reception was going to be enshrined in a House of Bishops’ Declaration, attached to a Canon which could only be altered by a two-thirds majority in each House of the General Synod, I would not have believed you.” Read...

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New Chairman of Forward in Faith

Nov 17, 2014 by

The Rt Revd Tony Robinson, Bishop of Pontefract, has been elected unopposed as Chairman of Forward in Faith for a four-year term of office. He succeeds the Bishop of Fulham, the Rt Revd Jonathan Baker, whose term of office as Chairman ended at the meeting of the National Assembly held at St Alban’s, Holborn, on Saturday 15 November 2014. In his address to the National Assembly, the Bishop of Pontefract called on members of Forward in Faith to respond to the invitation and challenge to flourish within the life and structures of the Church of England. Catholic Anglicans, he said, needed to be open to, and engaged with, the rest of the Church of England. He called on the Catholic Movement to be ‘tolerant of the diversity of views that exists among us’ and to ‘work harder at unity amongst ourselves’. Bishop Tony’s address may be read here: http://www.forwardinfaith.com/news/na2014.html Dr Lindsay Newcombe and the Revd Ross Northing were re-elected unopposed as Lay Vice-Chairman and Clerical Vice-Chairman respectively. Elections were held for five places on the National Council of Forward in Faith. The successful candidates were: the Revd Philip Corbett, the Revd Ian McCormack, Prebendary David Houlding, the Revd Ian Brooks, and Mr Andrew...

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