First a letter from a Catholic priest in Sydney (not sure he will have impressed his boss, Cardinal Pell)
As a Catholic priest I shudder when I read that people might want to join the Catholic Church because they find their own too inclusive . Certainly the Catholic Church itself has a long way to go regarding inclusiveness, but the last thing it needs is more people who are anti-women, anti-gay or anti-anybody.Father John Crothers Penshurst
and then an article from Dr Muriel Porter. Muriel is a journalist but also is a member of the Standing Committee of the General Synod of the Anglican Church of Australia and has been a leader in the fight for women priests and bishops in the Australian church. She is has written a book The New Puritans: the rise of fundamentalism in the Anglican Church describing the activities of the Sydney Diocese. I have heard her preach at St James.
The Vatican finally gets its revenge on Henry VIII
It concludes (my bold) - But the emergence of women bishops has persuaded Rome to give them Anglican parishes within a Catholic world order. From the Roman perspective, it is a means of demonstrating to its own restive nuns and lay women that there is no hope of female equality in the foreseeable future. It may, however, lead to some heart-searching for Catholics concerned about the impact that priestly celibacy continues to have on their Church. How can it be unacceptable for home-grown clergy to marry but quite OK for the imports from Anglicanism?
It will be interesting to see how many Anglican clergy and laity actually go over to Rome. The Anglican Church has a much more democratic polity than the Catholic Church. Anglican vicars and parishes have a significant degree of autonomy and Anglicans have decision-making powers through diocesan and national synods. They participate in the election of their bishops. They help decide how church finances will be spent. Will they adjust easily to the complete obedience required by Papal autocracy?
Is it any wonder that the strident voices of atheism are attractive to contemporary people when churches split apart over the irrational fear of the feminine?