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It is a chilling expression in any context, but particularly when used to describe the operational life of the church.

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Tomorrow in the British House of Commons a study called “Contemporary Catholicism in England and Wales” will be presented to the members. In the study Stephen Bullivant, senior lecturer in theology and ethics at St Mary’s Catholic University in London, analyses data collected over three decades for a survey of “British Social Attitudes.”

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I know I’m cheating. I said IASP was taking a break at least for July and August. But some things just can’t slip by unnoticed.

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Recently I was asked to explain the origins of the Anglican Church/Church of England/Episcopal Church (US).

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As religion stories go, this one seems to have legs. The Church of England’s inability to accept the ordination of women as Bishops has found space in the mainstream media since at least November 20. That is a pretty long shelf life for any news story, let alone one dealing exclusively with matters of church governance.

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It is good to listen to your critics, and if you work in a religious institution you have lots of opportunity. Criticism of religion is an almost universally enjoyed pastime.

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I have been curious, since Tuesday, about the arguments that swayed the Church of England to avoid the hazard of embracing the possibility of women serving as bishops in the church by six lay votes in its recent Synod action.

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By an exceedingly slim margin, the Synod of the Church of England yesterday defeated a motion that would have allowed women to be ordained as Bishops in their church where they have been ordaining women as priests since 1994.

Both the out-going Archbishop of Canterbury and his successor pleaded with Synod to pass the motion.

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On March 17 N.T. Wright published an article in The Times of London in which he offered his assessment of Rowan Williams’ tenure as Archbishop of Canterbury and recommended the way forward for Rowan’s successor.

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You have set my feet in a spacious place ~ Psalm 31:8

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