Archbishops set up group to review 2014 Women Bishops Measure after Sheffield debacle

Feb 10, 2018 by

by Madeleine Davies, Church Times:

THE House of Bishops has expressed regret that “not nearly enough” was done to create an understanding of the practical outworking of the settlement that accompanied the Women Bishops Measure.

An Implementation and Dialogue group has been established to help the Church “engage in further consideration of the issues”.

In a response to Sir Philip Mawer’s independent review into Bishop Philip North’s nomination to the See of Sheffield (News, 22 September), the Archbishops, speaking on behalf of the House, express “regret that, as Sir Philip concluded, not nearly enough was done to create an understanding of what the Declaration and Settlement would mean in practice”. They say that the House “whole-heartedly accepts” all four of the review’s recommendations.

Among these was the establishment of “a group with balanced membership to review what has been done; distil examples of good practice within dioceses; and provide resources to help dioceses, deaneries and parishes, and theological training institutions to engage in further consideration of the issues”. The question to ask, he said, was “what would mutual flourishing look like — for me, for you, and for the Church — and what do I need to do to ensure it is achieved?”

The new group will be chaired by the Bishop of Rochester, the Rt Revd James Langstaff, supported by the Bishop of Aston, the Rt Revd Anne Hollinghurst. The membership includes the chair of WATCH, Canon Emma Percy; the Bishop of Maidstone, the Rt Revd Rod Thomas; and the Bishop of Fulham, the Rt Revd Jonathan Baker. The vice-chair of the House of Laity, Elizabeth Paver, is the only lay member.

Also published, in response to Sir Philip’s recommendation that the House ask the Faith and Order Commission to “examine the theological challenge” posed to the settlement, is a new guide produced by the Faith and Order Commission: The Five Guiding Principles: a resource for study. It is available free of charge online.

Read here


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