Report Outlines Proposals : Church of England May Split Over Ordaining Women
The Church of England, headed by the country’s monarch for 4 1/2 centuries, may split if it proceeds with plans to ordain women as priests, a report said Thursday.
The report outlining proposals on how the church can deal with the ordination of women will figure prominently in debates at the church’s Fourth General Synod in York July 4-8.
The synod, comprising the houses of bishops, clergy and laity, voted 307 to 183 in 1984 to draft legislation for the ordination of women.
The report, drawn to serve as a basis of discussion for drafting the necessary legislation, said the committee of representatives from all three houses “found itself about equally divided” on the issue.
“It is our united belief that every effort must be made to preserve the peace and unity of the Church of England,” the committee said.
Essentially, the report outlined ways the church could try to remain unified by maintaining what would amount to separate wings, one for those who accept women priests and one for those who do not.