Today, the ABC showed a particularly lovely event. The Anglican Synod decided to allow the consecration of women bishops. I thought there was a particular strength of character in the faces of women who’d stuck with their church, determined to innovate from within. Pleasingly, the ABC replaying the BBC coverage didn’t show too many of the nay sayers, just the struggling victorious. One woman, awash with tears, said: “tears are a good thing today”.
I may have gotten crucial terms wrong, for which I ask forgiveness from the relevant reader. As a person born Catholic, I know my mother ship has a lot to undo. Were it not for that clutch of chauvinist cardinals in the Vatican, the recent find in the Catacombs of a frieze, that looked suspiciously like a woman bishop officiating, was deliberately misinterpreted. No, it did not support the ordination of women, said the relevant curator. I think the Gospel of Mary Magdalene is a convincing argument; the powerful picture it draws of men incapable of reaching spiritual truth was clearly unacceptable to Peter & his successors. Even the gospels & epistles in their obviously edited version give hints of a time when women and men both followed the Christ’s teaching & were treated equally by him.
I’m sure a responsible Vatican curator has secreted convincing evidence of the equality of men & women in Christ’s ministry; no one would actually destroy such stuff, no matter how currently politically unacceptable or unpalatable.
That’s the wonder of the good books; the glimpses they afford of past times: the feast that ended the eucharistic celebration, attended belatedly by poorer folk who could not compete with the ostentation of the rich. Then, there’s the village that comes to Paul’s attention, where everyone decided that the end of the world is nigh; they down tools & civilization comes to a halt. Against such glimpses of social folly in previous times, equality between men & women as ministers of Christ’s message of truth is not much to ask for. Bring it on. Let’s have a woman Archbishop of Canterbury SOON.
After all, we enjoyed Dawn French as the Vicar of Dibley, better than Father Ted, equal to Fr. Brown. Both showed a delicate balance of authority and personal foible. Sadly, one rarely saw it in real life.