Anglicans Approve Women Bishops
On July 7 the Church of England voted to consecrate women bishops even though traditionalist clergy threatened to leave the Anglican communion. The General Synod voted down proposals to create “super bishops” which meant that traditionalists could no longer avoid being ministered to by female clergy. Synod bishops voted 28 to 12 for the motion, the clergy voted 124 to 44 and laity voted 111 to 68. Legislation will come back to the synod for review next February and then go to dioceses for final vote requiring a two-thirds majority.
Rome May Welcome Traditional Anglicans
On July 25 Archbishop John Hepworth, Primate of the Traditional Anglican Communion publicized a letter from Cardinal William Levada of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith assuring the archbishop that Rome is giving “serious attention” to the “prospect of corporate unity” raised in a 2007 letter from the Anglican primate. The Traditional Anglican Communion claims 400,000 members worldwide.
On July 31 Cardinal Walter Kasper gave a grim prognosis for future reunification with the Anglican communion, as a whole: “Although our dialogue has led to a significant agreement on the idea of priesthood, the ordination of women to the episcopate blocks substantially and finally a possible recognition of Anglican orders by the Catholic Church.”
Meanwhile, according to a Vatican official, the Anglican Communion's Lambeth Conference began a process for addressing issues that divide Anglicans and pose challenges for dialogue with the Roman Catholic Church. "The dialogue will continue," said Canadian Msgr. Donald Bolen, who deals with Catholic-Anglican issues at the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity and who attended the entire conference.
(Reports from The Times of London, Catholic News Agency and Catholic News