The Church of England General Synod has finally voted to allow women bishops. The Daily Telegraph reports here.
The main thrust of the argument seems to be that the members of the Church of England didn’t want to feel ‘weird’.
During the debate at Church House in London one leading women cleric warned that the failure to agree the issue in the past made them simply look “weird”.
During the debate Canon Rosie Harper, chaplain to the Bishop of Buckingham, said:
“I would like to take a moment to look at this from the outside in.
“I would like to name the sheer weirdness of a community arguing about discrimination in the 21st century – people out there don’t care enough to be angry but they do dismiss us as weird.
“If we are serious about our mission, and I know this is a very basic point, we really do have to stop being weird.”
I remember the debates in the Church of England in the late 80s about women’s ordination to the priesthood. There was solid debate from clergy and laypeople about the underlying important issues. We discussed (and disagreed) about the theology of priesthood, our sacramental theology and the impact of the decision on church unity. We discussed the scriptural arguments, the theological arguments, the political and practical arguments.
Now it all comes down to, “Hey folks, people think we’re weird! Let’s not be weird! Let’s fit in and go with the crowd!” Rosie Harper keeps harping on this theme and as she does she recites the Anglican creed from it’s formation in the sixteenth century, “The spirit of the age is our spirit! We must go with the prevailing trend in society! What the king says goes. What the culture dictates we accept. We must fit in. We are after all, the established church.”
What has this to do with the gospel at all? “Render unto Caesar” has become “render everything to Caesar.” In fact it has become “We have no king but Caesar” and where have I heard that before?
I am always amazed at how the Pope seems to speak accurately to the Anglican situation almost exactly at the right time. This week while the Church of England General Synod has broken out the champagne to celebrate yet another marriage with the Spirit of the Age, Pope Francis delivers this blistering rejection of compromise with the Spirit of the Age.
the people of God prefer to distance themselves from the Lord in favour of worldly proposals. He said worldliness is the root of evil and it can lead us to abandon our traditions and negotiate our loyalty to God who is always faithful. This – the Pope admonished – is called apostasy, which he said is a form of “adultery” which takes place when we negotiate the essence of our being: loyalty to the Lord.
I’ve written further on this topic here. The other irony is that this report comes in the same week when former Archbishop of Canterbury George Carey has bemoaned the decline of the Church of England…saying the CofE will be gone in another generation. More on that here.
This shows the typical self righteous blindness of the progressives. A progressive is never self critical. So blinded by their ideology they cannot imagine that they basic principles and precepts are flawed. That can never be. Therefore with the naive optimism of the truly stupid they go on making the same mistakes over and over again. In fact, they make the same mistakes on a larger and larger scale until the whole thing caves.
Since the 1960s the Church of England (like all the mainstream Protestant denominations) has been following the progressive path–accommodating one liberal cause after another, compromising the faith, denying the basic Christian doctrines, ignoring Christian-Biblical morality, throwing out tradition and espousing every crazy craze that seems like a good idea. The evidence is that their churches are emptying. The whole thing is going down the pan very fast.
And their response is to do more of the same.
And they say that they are no longer weird?
UPDATE: This comment from an Anglican exults in the decision and says pretty much, “We sat down and worked it out and talked to each other and have agreed to disagree. Once again–a perfectly Anglican solution: you may believe what you like as long as you let me believe what I like. What we will not tolerate is intolerance.