Church of England: 1700 – Rome: 0
“1992: Church of England votes for women priests
Women fighting for the right to be Anglican priests are celebrating a narrow victory.
After a five-and-a-half hour debate the General Synod – the Church of England’s parliament – passed the controversial legislation by a margin of only two votes.
There were jubilant scenes among supporters outside Church House in Westminster, London, when the decision was announced.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr George Carey, who had backed the proposal said he recognised the result would not please everyone.
“What binds us together in God’s love as a Church is vastly more important than a disagreement about women’s ordination,” Dr Carey said.
- The ordination of women in the Church of England began in March 1994.
By the year 2000 about 1,700 women were working as Anglican priests.
A report in the same year revealed many women priests suffered harassment and nearly half of male clergy refused to take communion from them.
In 1993 Ann Widdecombe became a Roman Catholic.
A year later former Environment Secretary John Gummer also converted in protest at women priests.
The debate in the Church of England has now moved on to whether women should be allowed to become bishops. So far only Anglican churches in the USA, Canada and New Zealand have women bishops.”
It’s useless to pretend the Old Boys Network in Rome isn’t watching this turn of events and shaking their heads – “Ha! Women as bishops? Not in our lifetime!”
And so it goes, a cadre of old men whispering, “Prego, do you think they will hear about this in America? The Church of England has 1700 female priests?”