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 Issues | The Church | Overseas Clergy 1967

Priests (Ordination of Women) Measure 1993

Excerpts

Part I of this measure removed the legal impediments to the ordination of women as presbytrs (priests).

Part II made some provision for those who could not in conscience accept this innovation.

recognised by the CofE.

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Part II

Discharge of Functions

2 Bishops

(1)A bishop of a diocese in office at the relevant date may make any one or more of the following declarations—
(a)that a woman is not to be ordained within the diocese to the office of priest; or
(b)that a woman is not to be instituted or licensed to the office of incumbent or priest-in-charge of a benefice, or of team vicar for a benefice, within the diocese; or
(c)that a woman is not to be given a licence or permission to officiate as a priest within the diocese.

3 Parishes

(1)Subject to the following provisions of this section the parochial church council of a parish may pass either or both of the resolutions set out as Resolution A and Resolution B in Schedule 1 to this Measure.

(2)Subject to the following provisions of this section a parochial church council which has passed a resolution under subsection (1) above may by resolution rescind it, and the first-mentioned resolution shall continue in force until rescinded.

(3)A motion for a resolution in the form set out as Resolution A in Schedule 1 to this Measure shall not be considered by a parochial church council if the incumbent or priest-in-charge of the benefice concerned, or any team vicar or assistant curate for that benefice, is a woman ordained to the office of priest.

(4)A resolution shall not be passed by a parochial church council under subsection (1) or (2) above unless—
(a)except where notice of a vacancy has been sent to the secretary of the council under section 7(4) of the Patronage (Benefices) Measure 1986, the secretary of the council has given to the members of the council at least four weeks' notice of the time and place of the meeting at which the motion proposing the resolution is to be considered; and
(b)the meeting is attended by at least one half of the members of the council entitled to attend.

(5)A copy of any resolution passed by a parochial church council under subsection (1) or (2) above shall be sent to the following—
(a)the bishop of the diocese concerned;
(b)the rural dean of the deanery concerned;
(c)the lay chairman of the deanery synod concerned;
(d)the registrar of the diocese concerned;
(e)the designated officer for the diocese concerned, within the meaning of section 7(5) of the [1986 No.3.] Patronage (Benefices) Measure 1986;
(f)the registered patron of the benefice concerned, within the meaning of section 39(1) of that Measure.

(6)Where a resolution under subsection (1) above is in force a person discharging any function in relation to the parish or benefice concerned shall not act in contravention of the resolution:Provided that this subsection shall not apply in relation to a service held in a parish church cathedral on the direction of the bishop of the diocese.

(7)The Patronage (Benefices) Measure 1986 shall have effect as if in section 11 (requirements as to meetings of parochial church council) there were inserted at the end of subsection (1) the word “and” and the following paragraph—
“(f)deciding whether to pass a resolution under section 3(1) or (2) of the Priests (Ordination of Women) Measure 1993.”

(8)Subsections (1) to (6) above and Schedule 1 to this Measure shall apply in relation to a guild church designated and established under section 4 of the [1952 c.xxxviii.] City of London (Guild Churches) Act 1952 as they apply in relation to a parish, but as if the references to the parochial church council of the parish were references to the guild church council of the guild church.

(9)In the case of a parish in which there is a parish church cathedral and in respect of which functions of the parochial church council have been transferred to the administrative body of the cathedral in pursuance of section 12 of the Cathedrals Measure 1963, this section shall have effect as if the references to the parochial church council of the parish were references to the administrative body of the cathedral or any other body to whom functions under this section have been delegated in pursuance of subsection (6) of the said section 12.

(10)In this section “parish” means—
(a)an ecclesiastical parish; and
(b)a district which is constituted a conventional district for the cure of souls.

5 Ecclesiastical offences

It shall be an offence against the laws ecclesiastical, for which proceedings may be taken under the [1963 No.1.] Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction Measure 1963—
(a)for any bishop to act in contravention of a declaration under section 2(1) above; or
(b)for any bishop, priest or deacon to act in contravention of a resolution under section 3(1) above or to permit any act in contravention of such a resolution to be committed in any church or any building licensed for public worship according to the rites and ceremonies of the Church of England; or
(c)for any bishop, priest or deacon to act in contravention of a resolution under section 4(1) above or to permit any act in contravention of such a resolution to be committed in any cathedral church.

6 Discriminatory discharge of certain functions

Without prejudice to section 19 of the [1975 c. 65.] Sex Discrimination Act 1975, nothing in Part II of that Act shall render unlawful sex discrimination against a woman in respect of—
(a)her ordination to the office of priest in the Church of England;
(b)the giving to her of a licence or permission to serve or officiate as such a priest;
(c)her appointment as dean, incumbent, priest-in-charge or team vicar or, in the case of a woman ordained to the office of priest, as assistant curate.

 

SCHEDULE 1

Forms of Parish Resolution

Resolution A

That this parochial church council would not accept a woman as the minister who presides at or celebrates the Holy Communion or pronounces the Absolution in the parish.

Resolution B

That this parochial church council would not accept a woman as the incumbent or priest-in-charge of the benefice or as a team vicar for the benefice.

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Related Links
C of E Legal Framework
BulletIntroduction
BulletStatutes of Provisors
BulletStatutes of Praemunire
BulletAct of Supremacy 1534
BulletAct of Uniformity 1559
BulletCoronation Oath Act 1688
BulletAct of Settlement 1701
BulletEnabling Act 1919
BulletOverseas and Other Clergy 1967
BulletWorship+Doctrine Measure 1974
BulletPastoral Measure 1983 (excerpts)
BulletOrdination of Women 1993
BulletEpiscopal MInistry Act 1993

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