As elaborate plans are mooted for somehow simultaneously having female bishops and not having female bishops, I puzzle over about the whole notion of preventing schism by institutionalising it. Really?
Everybody knows it’s coming. The question is “how?” There’s a discussion Tuesday among my colleagues in funny hats, to be developed by the House of Bishops (of which I am not a member) another day, and taken to the General Synod to decide. Justice, operationally, to losers — of course; but it’s kindest and truest to make up our minds. Personally, I’ve been trying to stay my anxiety in the traditional way for frightened males of my father’s generation to calm their nerves: an evening’s anxious Kipling:
Man, a bear in most relations—worm and savage otherwise,—Friends, shall we Kipple? probably not. The time for Kipling is over. However there is a line that runs from Duck-Rabbit integrative complexity to subtlety to ambiguity to fudge to hypocrisy. Now’s the time to decide where we place ourselves on that line, and the way to decide, after we have listened carefully, is by charity and higher logic, not the purest hobgoblins of small minds.
Man propounds negotiations, Man accepts the compromise.
Very rarely will he squarely push the logic of a fact
To its ultimate conclusion in unmitigated act...
So it comes that Man, the coward, when he gathers to confer
With his fellow-braves in council, dare not leave a place for her
Where, at war with Life and Conscience, he uplifts his erring hands
To some God of Abstract Justice—which no woman understands.