When [Rowan] Williams began his term in office in 2003, the Anglican communion was reeling from a bitter if recently resolved war over female priests. Williams had supported that step and cautiously supported the next—the ordination of female bishops. But he insisted on concessions to the “conscience” of congregations that disagreed. The latest version of that legislation, on which the church’s General Synod is scheduled to vote on Nov. 20, promises that requests for alternative male bishops will be treated with “respect.” Williams campaigned for the new language, warning of “intensified internal conflict” if it failed.
Williams’s centrist approach doesn’t suit all of his parishioners. Critics to his left have called his desire for unity his “Obama syndrome”—a fanciful belief that the conservative side will come around if given enough time.
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Posted November 19, 2012 at 5:30 am
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