As the year draws to a close, the dispute between the conservative and liberal wings of the Anglican Church of England is once again gaining momentum. With new structures, she now wants to give women access to the episcopate. It remains questionable whether the conservatives are satisfied with it.
According to British press reports Tuesday, dioceses run by women will be given male "auxiliary bishops" to deal with congregations that do not want to accept women bishops. Plans to that effect were made public Monday. The measures are expected to be approved at the General Synod in February. They could reportedly be implemented as early as within the next three years. The compromise in the dispute over women bishops follows the model of the Episcopal Church in the U.S., where so-called "flying bishops" have been in place for several years. The church's women's association "Women and the Church" is very pleased, the daily newspaper "The Times" quoted a spokeswoman as saying. However, there is also fear that male "supplementary bishops" could undermine the authority of their female counterparts. Strife simmering for years It also remains questionable whether conservative Anglicans will be satisfied with such a compromise. According to the BBC, there have been renewed threats to leave the church over the ordination of women bishops. As early as July, around 1.300 clergy threatened to leave Anglican Church after General Synod voted in favor of new structures. Within the world Anglican Communion, a dispute between the conservative and liberal wings over the church's course has simmered for years. The ie also concerns the admission of women and homosexuals to the episcopate. Controversy repeatedly leads to secessions and parallel structures.