Jun 15, 2010

Rowan Williams, ¨the petty¨ Archbishop of Canterbury, doesn´t approve of high placed women at Church of England wearing ¨symbols of their office¨

Elizabeth I, Supreme Governor of The Church of England, wearing symbols of HER office

¨If the US Episcopal Church – still part of the worldwide Anglican communion despite having the temerity to elect gay bishops – feels nervous about the warmth of its welcome from the mothership that is the Church of England, perhaps there are reasons. Katharine Jefferts Schori, the presiding bishop of the US church and the first woman ever to lead an Anglican province, preached at Southwark Cathedral last weekend despite muted hisses of disapproval by conservative evangelicals. But close observers would have seen there was something missing: no mitre on her head. Who could be responsible? Step forward, Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury, birthday boy (60 yesterday), who couldn't stop her preaching but said she could not wear the symbol of her office, or carry a bishop's crosier.¨

Elizabeth II, Supreme Governor of The Church of England, wearing symbols of HER office

¨Something to do with women bishops not yet being allowed in the C of E. A bit petty, some say, as Jefferts Schori is indeed a bishop and head of her national church – but in any event, she carried the mitre. And the subject for her sermon: God welcomes everyone, regardless of dress or condition HERE


Rowan Williams The ¨crass and rude¨

COMMENT: ¨Oh, this is so crass and bloody rude. I cannot think of any other situation where a representative of a church, even a church with whom we are not in communion, would be asked not to wear their signs of office.

Is the Queen (God bless her majesty) going to demand that Benny turns up in Mufti for his recruitment drive in the Autumn? Of course not. The Queen has impeccable manners. It's a good job she's the head of the Church of England and not that uncouth oik from Wales


"The King's majesty hath the chief power in this Realm of England, and other of his Dominions, unto whom the chief Government of all Estates of this Realm, whether they be Ecclesiastical or Civil, in all causes doth appertain, and is not, nor ought to be, subject to any foreign jurisdiction ... We give not to our Princes the ministering either of God's Word, or of the Sacraments ... but that only prerogative, which we see to have been given always to all Godly Princes in holy Scriptures by God himself; that is, that they should rule all estates and degrees committed to their charge by God, whether they be Ecclesiastical or Temporal, and restrain with the civil sword the stubborn and evildoer ... The Bishop of Rome hath no jurisdiction in this Realm of England." HERE

UPDATE: NO MITRE OR CROZIER FOR YOU, KATE (nor it appears for any other woman at the Misogynist Church of England)

Although Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams did not stop Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori from presiding and preaching at Southwark Cathedral this past Sunday, he would not permit her to wear her symbol of office, the mitre, and carry her crozier, because the Church of England does not yet allow women bishops.

And, ¨with women clergy in the C of E looking forward to next month's vote in the general synod in York – which is expected finally to agree that women can become bishops here – word comes of a last-minute attempt to scupper the plans. And who is responsible for that? Step forward again, Williams, who with fellow archbishop John Sentamu is framing an amendment to put off yet again making any decision. Synod headed off their attempts to delay progress last year, but the archbishops are trying it on again. The world moves on but somehow time stands still. Welcome to the C of E.¨ HERE

THE PARABLE OF ROWAN WILLIAMS (The Gospel According to Fred Schwartz)

Rowan Williams invited Katherine Jefferts-Schori to dine with him,
and she entered the Archbisop Williams house and reclined at table.

Now there was a sinful woman in the city
who learned that Bishop Schori was at table in the house of the Archbishop
Bringing an alabaster flask of ointment,
she stood behind her at her feet weeping
and began to bathe her feet with her tears.

Then she wiped them with her hair,
kissed them, and anointed them with the ointment.

When Archbishop Rowan Williams who had invited Bishop Schori saw this he said to himself, “If this woman were a real Anglican,
she would know who and what sort of woman this is who is touching her,
that she is a sinner.”

Bishop Katherine said to him in reply,
“Rowan, I have something to say to you.”

“Tell me, Katherine, ” he said.

“Two people were in debt to a certain creditor;
one owed five hundred day’s wages and the other owed fifty.
Since they were unable to repay the debt, he forgave it for both.
Which of them will love him more?”

Archbishop Williams said in reply,
“The one, I suppose, whose larger debt was forgiven.”
Bishop Schori said to him, “You have judged rightly.”
Then she turned to the woman and said to Rowan,

“Do you see this woman?

When I entered your house, you did not give me water for my feet,
but she has bathed them with her tears
and wiped them with her hair.
You did not give me a kiss,
but she has not ceased kissing my feet since the time I entered.
You did not anoint my head with oil,
but she anointed my feet with ointment.

So I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven
because she has shown great love.
But the one to whom little is forgiven, loves little.”

She said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”

The others at table said to themselves,
“Who is this who even forgives sins?”

But she said to the woman,
“Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

And Archbishop Rowan Williams became so enraged that he removed all of
Bishop Schori’s representatives to the various inter-faith councils.


¨Apparently we are in a state of impaired communion with the CofE, given that they do not recognize our women bishops as bishops. This will of course come as something of a shock to the European Luterans who have women bishops and gay bishops in committed relationships, but never mind. They are not bound hip and thigh to the CofE. Come to think of it, neither are we.¨ HERE


¨...Muir suggests some might see this as "petty" but let us not underestimate the power of haberdashery. After all, strip away all the vestments of the English Episcopate and you will have a shivering collection of generally pasty male Brits, with a few exotic flavours mixed in for good measure. And allow a woman in authority actually to cover her head as Scripture mandates -- with a sign of her authority publicly to preach and pray (1 Corinthians 11:5,10) -- and who knows what people might think!

Meanwhile, it is a truism that when people have no power over great things they descend to controlling the few small things they can.

UPDATED: I should add if true, petty, indeed. Also stupid. Let us count the ways:

1) Not wearing the hat doesn't mean you're not a bishop If the Archbishop really thinks that somehow not wearing a mitre reduces the authority of a bishop, well, that's just sad. Personally, if I were a bishop, I'd welcome the excuse not to wear the thing which, frankly, makes anyone look quite silly.

2) Way to win over the womenfolk! Because this move says to me that the ABC is nothing but a mouther of platitudes about inclusion.

3) More publicity for the PB's visit Had the ABC merely done nothing, the PB would have preached and carried on. As it is, the PB preached, and the message of her sermon is repeated yet again today.

4) He managed to please absolutely no one The PB still preached which would displease evangelicals, who hate her liberalism, and traditionalists, who don't believe she should have any authority at all. But he still managed to annoy liberals by the way she was treated. And the lack of hospitality would embarrass almost anyone.

5) Good job making yourself look like a jerk! Didn't he ever read that part about heaping coals of fire on someone's head? The PB managed to miss the coals and the ridiculous mitre too.

The Archbishop confuses me greatly. I really have no idea why he does these things.

The Presiding Bishop's sermon ended this way:

Those who know the deep acceptance and love that come with healing and forgiveness can lose the defensive veneer that wants to shut out other sinners. They discover that covering their hair or hiding their tears or hoarding their rich perfume isn't the way that the beloved act, even if it makes others nervous. Eventually it may even cure the anxious of their own fear by drawing them toward a seat at that heavenly banquet. There's room for us all at this table, there are tears of welcome and a kiss for the wanderer, and the sweet smell of home.

I wish the Archbishop had been there to hear it HERE

· Thanks to The Guardian, United Kingdom
· Thanks to Hugh Muir
· Thanks to Mad Priest, sidebar
· Thanks to Of Course, I Could Be Wrong, sidebar
· Thanks to Three Rivers Episcopal, sidebar
· Thanks to Wounded Bird
· Thanks to June Butler
· Thanks to Real Anglicans, sidebar
· Thanks to Fred Schwartz
· Thanks to The Reverend Canon Mark Harris
· Thanks to Preludium, sidebar
· Thanks to Tobias Stanislas Haller BSG
· Thanks to In a Godward Direction, sidebar
· Thanks to The Infusion
· Thanks to Flick Photo Sharing
· Thanks to Wikipedia

TAKE ACTION AGAINST BIGOTRY, IGNORANCE and OUTCASTING/SOCIAL ISOLATION: The ANGLICAN UN, United Nations, HUMAN RIGHTS Observer, Mrs Hellen Grace Wangusa from Uganda, has an office and staff provided by the Episcopal Church (USA) at the Church Center 815 Second Avenue, New York, 10017. The direct office line is (001) 212-716- 6263 and the email address unoffice@episcopalchurch.org

Lionel Deimel, Anglican HERO, click HERE,¨No Anglican Covenant¨

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