Rowan to Katharine: don’t wear your mitre in England

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From Hugh Muir’s Diary in The Guardian:

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, Archbish 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. 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.

Muir also notes this news about the ordination of women as bishops in Church of England:

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.

The Presiding Bishop is visiting New Zealand and Australia next.

#mitregate

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Michael Russell
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Michael Russell

Perhaps we could have a Bishop chime in on this. What is protocol for mitre wearing and crozier carrying when you are in someone else's diocese?

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Chris Epting
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Peter,

I could not agree more with your post. Thank you for putting it so well!

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Peter Pearson
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Peter Pearson

This news is not surprising and it made me wonder about what it must be like to be the person trying to keep this all together knowing that the task is impossible. Could it be that he knows that the American Church is indeed very humble and willing to work to assist in this so long as nothing vital is compromised (like the dignity of LGBT folks) and that our Katharine has the grace and graciousness to allow herself to be chastised and censured for the sake of a greater good? Could it be that we are achieving our desired ends by non-aggressive means? If this is what is happening, even the Archbishop of Canterbury knows that change is happening all around him and the only thing he can to is to attempt to soften the blow. I do not envy that man his place in this drama nor do I envy Katharine's prophetic role. Prophet's tend to get knocked around a great deal.

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Jim Naughton
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The Archbishop of Canterbury increasingly reminds me of the mistress of a girls' school who stalks the hallways with a ruler measuring to see whether skirts end too far above the knee.

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Rod Gillis
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Rod Gillis

Soooo, When Benedict arrives in merry olde, he will no doubt also be told not wear any overt symbols of the papal office, since according to the 39 articles ( :, he hath no jurisdiction etc. O but wait, Benedict is a boy!

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