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Norwich Bishop looks to future after 'no' vote

The Bishop of Norwich has written to all clergy and other officials across the Diocese following the defeat of the Women Bishops legislation earlier in the week.

BishopNorwich370Bishop Graham noted that the overall vote was more than 72% in favour and yet the legislation was defeated. He wrote: “Hardly anyone has considered the result good news for the Church of England.

“It will not be at all easy to identify a solution which will satisfy all sides, given the years that we have already put into discussions, debates and negotiations leading to Tuesday’s vote.  But with God all things are possible. Through Jesus Christ and his cross what appears tragic is transformed by him into a triumph of love.
 
“So this isn’t the time to stop listening to each other or honouring each other within our Church.  It is a time to go even deeper in prayer and to offer our disappointment to God as we seek a better and more united future,” wrote Bishop Graham.
 
“The tragedy of Tuesday’s vote is that it is easily interpreted as the Church of England rejecting the ministry of women as priests.  We must remind people not just of the overwhelming majority in favour but of the strong and widespread appreciation of our ordained women clergy. 
 
“It is one of the great virtues of the Church of England that we want to take as many people with us as possible whenever such changes are made.  In a society in which minorities are not always honoured, despite the common rhetoric about them, our part of the Christian Church takes its responsibility in creating unity and diversity very seriously indeed. 

“The House of Bishops met early on the morning after the vote and we shall be meeting again in less than three weeks for two days.  Please pray for your bishops as they seek to lead our beloved Church through the consequences of this vote,” he said.
 
You can read the full letter here
  
Read our previous story on this topic
 


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