Fringe Box



Guildford Diocese Will Not Get A Woman Bishop – Yet

Published on: 15 Jul, 2014
Updated on: 17 Jul, 2014

Diocese of Guildford armsThe Diocese of Guildford will narrowly miss out on the possibility of the next Bishop of Guildford being one of the first Anglican female bishop, as interviews for the post will take place next week.

The name of the successful candidate is expected to be released by the Prime Minister’s Office towards the end of the year. Draft legislation necessary to allow women to become bishops will now go to Parliament for approval and is expected to become law in November.

The Bishop of Dorking the Rt Revd Ian Brackley, the stand-in Bishop of Guildford following the retirement of the previous permanent Bishop in November, has expressed his delight at the synod’s decision to allow the ordination of women bishops.

In the Church of England’s General Synod vote in York yesterday (July 14) the draft legislation was supported by 351 votes to 72 with 10 abstentions.

A previous proposal was passed in the Houses of Bishops and Clergy in November 2012, but failed to gain the required two-thirds majority in the House of Laity.

The acting Bishop of Guildford

The Rt Revd Ian Brackley, acting Bishop of Guildford

Bishop Ian said: “I am delighted that the legislation has been passed, not merely on a personal level, but because I believe it is very good news for the church.

“I look forward to the time in the near future when we shall have women as colleagues in the House of Bishops and in the House of Lords.

“This will have a positive effect too, I trust, for the wider Anglican Communion, for once the Church of England moves on something like this, then our sister Provinces that presently do not ordain women as priests and bishops may seriously consider doing so.

“I also believe that passing this legislation will not affect for the worse our ecumenical relationships with the Orthodox and Roman Catholic churches.

“On the contrary the Church of England will be able to model with integrity how opening all orders of ministry to women can liberate the church from being locked in by its past negative tradition and mindset, which believes that only men can and should be God’s appointed leaders.  So, well done, General Synod.”

Safeguards for the opponents , allowing them to request male priests and bishops to look after their parishes, are enshrined in principles set down in a declaration made by the House of Bishops, with disputes to be ruled on by an independent reviewer.

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