Has the Church of England finally lost its reason?

by Richard on November 22, 2012

ABC Religion: Women bishops and the collapse of Anglican theology

…the “No” vote constitutes a real crisis in representational structures in the Synod, as well as a noted new tension between Church and State. The Prime Minister - doubtless scenting a vote-puller - has not been slow to express his dismay at the outcome; and since the whole future of the House of Lords (and the presence of bishops in it) currently hangs in the balance, further pressure could in principle be applied by the government on the Church on this score: no women bishops, no representation in the House of Lords? We shall see.

But are even these political and governmental factors - historic and important as they are - the most significant feature of the current furore? I think not. The most dangerous element in this long-running saga has been insidiously hidden under an almost farcical set of pragmatic and political attempts at compromise, attempts to “protect” conservatives from the visceral dread of female authority. In short, the real issues are theological, and it is the Church’s current theological amnesia and confusion which is preventing it from thinking straight, let alone extending its honourable and distinctive traditions of ecclesiology to meet this new challenge.

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