Rowan Williams, I believe, is hoping to go out of office on a positive note. To this I would not object. Please read the Church Times article below to hear his new view on women bishops in the C of E.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, has begun a campaign to persuade General Synod members to back the new women bishops legislation when it returns to debate it next month.
The following article by Williams was published in the Church Times on Friday, Oct. 19.
No-one is likely to underrate the significance of November’s debate on women bishops in General Synod. It will shape the character of the Church of England for generations – and I’m not talking only about the decision we shall take, but about the way in which we discuss it and deal with the outcome of it.
Those who, like myself, long to see a positive vote will want this for a range of reasons which have to do with both the essential health of the Church and its credibility in our society. They are keenly aware of living with a degree of theological inconsistency.
As Anglicans we believe that there is one priesthood and one only in the Church, and that is the priesthood of Jesus Christ – his eternal offering of himself, crucified, risen and ascended, to the Father to secure everlasting ‘covenanted’ peace between heaven and earth. To live as ‘very members incorporate in his Body’ on earth is to be alive with his Spirit and so to be taken up in his action of praise and self-offering so that we may reflect something of it in our lives and relationships. To recall the Church to its true character in this connection, God calls individuals to gather the community, animate its worship and preside at its sacramental acts, where we learn afresh who we are. The priestly calling of all who are in Christ is thus focused in particular lives lived in service to the community and its well-being, integrity and holiness – lives that express in visible and symbolic terms the calling of a ‘priestly people’.
Read the rest of his statement here.