Monday, 5 May 2008

Women Bishops in CofE

Our Manchester Bishop, Nigel McCullogh (above, at a Mother's Union gathering in York Cathedral) chairs the group which just announced its report. He says, “The central issue for the Church of England, as our report points out, is the extent to which the Church wishes to accommodate the breadth of theological views that it currently encompasses in relation to women priests and bishops. Against that background, we have set out the three broad approaches which the Church of England could take if it wishes to move towards ordaining women bishops.”

The three approaches set out by the Legislative Drafting Group are:

* The simplest national statutory approach with no binding national arrangements;
* Legislation that would provide some basis for special arrangements for those unable to receive the ministry of women bishops, such arrangements to be made within the present structures of the Church of England;

* Legislation that would create new structures within the Church of England for those unable to receive the ministry of women bishops.

You can read the whole of it here .

Friday, 2 May 2008

Friday Five

On the Rev Gal Pals blog this week, Sally asks the Friday Five questions:

Prayer is a joy to some of us, and a chore to others, waiting likewise can be filled with anticipation or anxiety....

So how do you wait and pray?

1. How do you pray best, alone or with others?
Both - in silence I like especially like feeling the rich weight of quiet with others. I've enjoyed the peace of a Quaker meeting alot at different points in my life. Recently I've been struck by the beautiful silence of a few homebound parishioners following receiving Holy Communion. One older gentleman often has tears running down his face and and talks about feeling closer to his deceased wife when we share bread and wine together.
On my own, I was particularly good at praying in the car while driving the highways of Los Angeles. Often feeling/receiving an experience of the touch of God (literally) through the windshield.

2. Do you enjoy the discipline of waiting, is it a time of anticipation or anxiety?
NOT a patient person, but in general I enjoy anticipation of an event. In earlier days probably spent more time in unmet expectations than I do now (after a good dose of therapy). If waiting can be spent productively or constructively living into the future I'm really enjoying it.

3. Is there a time when you have waited upon God for a specific promise?
Hmmm ... Moving through the length and width of a denominational ordination promise was probably the the time for me. Although feeling supported by God through it and with some pretty amazing co-discerners (lots of time with one group listening) made the promise worth going through some of the difficulties.

4. Do you prefer stillness or action?
Again - Both! To be able to sit in quiet (at a 7 day centering prayer retreat) for hours each day meant the joy of walking in the mountains with wind rushing through silver birch trees was that more savored. In worship - to be able to move in procession AND sit peacefully for prayers feels just right.

5. If ( and this is slightly tongue in cheek) you were promised one gift spiritual or otherwise what would you choose to recieve?
Just ONE!?!?! I am always amazed at the power of touch in laying on of hands but never can be sure of "effectiveness" of the healing; so to be able to KNOW that laying on of hands would be curative - especially for people with chronic, debillitating illness - is something I'd like to "receive". But not for people to go on living forever, laying on of hands for a peaceful passage through death would be as important and valuable.

Thursday, 1 May 2008

JD's Conference!!

Today, 1 May or May 1, has been on the calendar for almost one year as the first day of JD's important international conference. And he's DONE it! I'm so proud. I got to be official "hospitality" - sort of like "First Lady to the Conference Organizer" and to meet face-to-face all the people he'd been in email contact and conversation was truly delightful.

It was a lovely - absolutely spring-like - day in Manchester and the Uni outdid itself in giving us a beautiful room in the old central building. People were put in a good mood from the moment they began walking up the historic stone staircase. Everyone had arrived safely and without incident from various places around the world: India, Australia, the US, as well as throughout the UK (and Europe) and represented Uganda, Ethiopia, China, as well. There were MA and PhD students, professors, bishops all in the same room talking and sharing ideas in papers and informally over tea and lunch. Many great friendships were begun I'm sure.

Check this for details ... and go back again for more good things as photos and short papers will be posted to the site.

JD is "dancing the jig on the inside" as we say whenever he's completely chuffed (that's excited in England)! No doubt Friday will be more of the same.