Earlier today, WATCH issued our response to the report by the Archbishops and the annexed report of the Working Party (GS 1886).
This Press Release accompanied our response. The complete response can be read here: WATCH response to GS 1886
WATCH is very encouraged by this report by the Archbishops with its very welcome commitment to opening all orders of ministry to women without equivocation. The proposals that they are asking General Synod to support in July are, in essence, ones that WATCH can fully endorse.
We are particularly heartened by paragraph 21 which says:
“The conviction of the House [of Bishops] is that the Church of England should now commit itself fully and unequivocally to all orders of ministry being open to all, without reference to gender. It would, in the view of the House sit very uncomfortably with that if the [General] Synod were to enshrine in legislation a series of rights, duties and definitions that would inevitably be seen as qualifying that commitment.”
We agree wholeheartedly with their conclusion that Option One offers the best way forward.
The Reverend Rachel Weir, Chair of WATCH said:
“It is very heartening to see the House of Bishops give such a strong lead to enable the Church to open all orders of ministry to women without equivocation. The gifts of ordained women should be welcomed and celebrated by the Church and all the signs are that the Bishops are now committed to making that happen.”