Thursday, 8 June 2006

Rome warns Canterbury against women bishops

Cardinal Walter Kasper, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, has warned the Church of England that a move to ordain women as bishops would destroy the possibility of full communion with the Catholic Church.

Kaspar makes several ominous remarks about the ecumenical effects of ordaining women as bishops. But his main argument is: “Where mutual recognition and communion between bishops does not exist or no longer exists, where one can therefore no longer concelebrate the Eucharist, then no church communion, at least no full church communion and thus no eucharistic communion, can exist.”

Walter Kasper is an admirable churchman and a very gifted theologian, and I can see where he’s coming from in all this. But let’s be frank: it’s a real shame when the question of women’s ordination is reduced merely to a matter of ecumenical politics.

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