OK then. I give in. Seeing as tomorrow is the start of the Extraordinary meeting of General Synod which will include on Tuesday a whole day debating the finalised motion with the Appleby amendment followed by a final vote, I shall succumb to the pressure and tell you exactly what I think.
Are you ready? Are you all of an anticipatory nature?
OK then, here’s what I think. I think I want to see an end to the partisan nature of the tweets and Facebook messages I’ve been bombarded with for the past week. I am up to HERE with people telling me that they’re praying hard for the right outcome, but also telling me what that right outcome should be. Seriously folks, are we not mature enough to just put down our party lines and just pray for the next two days for God’s will to be done. I mean, if he’ s in charge then whatever the outcome is is what he wants for us at this time.
Look, it’s this kind of thing that really winds me up.
Praying CofE Synod will make a RIGHT decision and support #WomenBishops progress towards an inclusive church
— Brian Hassan (@revbrianb) November 18, 2012
I’m sorry but what is this saying? Not only does it imply that there is a correct answer and that therefore THAT is the one that should be prayed for, but also that anyone who prays for the other answer (a “No”) is not following God.
And what if God wants a “No”? Seriously, you could be a supporter of women bishops and think that a “no” is the best answer. Why? Because if there’s a no this time if might lead to a single clause “Yes” next time. That might be the right thing.
I really don’t want to see another tweet telling me that the *right* think to do is to agree with the person who tweeted. This is much too important. It might be the right thing to do to consecrate women as bishops. It might be the right thing to do to refrain from doing that in order to maintain the unity of the Church of England, to sacrifice something for the greater good.
Ans you know what? I genuinely don’t know which of those two options is the right one.
But I’ll tell you what can’t be right, and that’s to suggest to the 469 voting members of General Synod that they have to vote a particular way because otherwise they will be going against God. It’s got to stop because it will ruin the next 48 hours and possibly the 48 months after it. This is the most important vote we’ve faced in two decades and if things carry on as they are both sides will lose despite whichever way the count of votes goes.
So please, dump your partisan hashtags and comments and just use a simple tweet – #prayingforsynod. Can we not just do that for two days? Is it so wrong just to turn to God and say “Your will be done”?